Purpose: Doxorubicin (DOX), is an anthracycline antibiotic widely used for the treatment of several solid tumors but its usage is limited by serious side effects to healthy tissues. The purpose of this study was to explore the effectiveness of zirconium phosphate nanoparticles (ZrP) as carrier of anticancer agents (ie. DOX) to tumor cells and potentially reduce side effects to healthy tissue. Methods: Confocal Microscopy (CM) was used to assess internalization and localization of doxorubicin-loaded ZrP nanoparticles (DOX:ZrP) in MCF-7 breast cancer cell line. The cytotoxicity of ZrP and DOX:ZrP in MCF-7 and MCF-10A cells was studied using MTT assay. Results: Co-internalization of DOX and ZrP nanoparticles into the cytoplasm and nucleus of MCF-7 cells was detected using CM. A high fluorescence in cell nucleus demonstrated DOX release from ZrP nanoparticles. ZrP alone is non-toxic to MCF-7 and MCF-10A cells. After a 48-hour treatment of MCF-7 cells with DOX:ZrP or DOX alone the IC50 obtained was 23µM and 24 µM, respectively. DOX cytotoxicity to MCF-7 cells after 72-hour treatment was three times higher than DOX:ZrP with IC50 of 0.74 µM and 3.15 µM, respectively. Conclusion: ZrP nanoparticles are internalized and can effectively deliver DOX to the interior of cancer cells. ZrP nanoparticles might provide a versatile platform for transportation of anticancer agents resulting in improved cancer therapy by reducing the side effects.

Citation Format: {Authors}. {Abstract title} [abstract]. In: Proceedings of the 103rd Annual Meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research; 2012 Mar 31-Apr 4; Chicago, IL. Philadelphia (PA): AACR; Cancer Res 2012;72(8 Suppl):Abstract nr 2909. doi:1538-7445.AM2012-2909