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Her2-Functionalized Gold-Nanoshelled Magnetic Hybrid Nanoparticles: a Theranostic Agent for Dual-Modal Imaging and Photothermal Therapy of Breast Cancer

  • Dong, Qi1
  • Yang, Hong2
  • Wan, Caifeng1
  • Zheng, Dongdong1
  • Zhou, Zhiguo2
  • Xie, Shaowei1
  • Xu, Li1
  • Du, Jing1
  • Li, Fenghua1
  • 1 Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Department of Ultrasound, Renji Hospital, School of Medicine, Shanghai, 200127, China , Shanghai (China)
  • 2 Shanghai Normal University, Department of Chemistry, College of Life and Environmental Science, Shanghai, 200234, China , Shanghai (China)
Published Article
Nanoscale Research Letters
Springer (Biomed Central Ltd.)
Publication Date
Aug 26, 2019
DOI: 10.1186/s11671-019-3053-4
Springer Nature


Targeted theranostic platform that integrates multi-modal imaging and therapeutic function is emerging as a promising strategy for earlier detection and precise treatment of cancer. Herein, we designed targeted gold-nanoshelled poly (lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) magnetic hybrid nanoparticles carrying anti-human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (Her2) antibodies (Her2-GPH NPs) for dual-modal ultrasound (US)/magnetic resonance (MR) imaging and photothermal therapy of breast cancer. The agent was fabricated by coating gold nanoshell around PLGA nanoparticles co-loaded with perfluorooctyl bromide (PFOB) and superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (SPIOs), followed by conjugating with anti-Her2 antibodies. Cell-targeting studies demonstrated receptor-mediated specific binding of the agent to Her2-positive human breast cancer SKBR3 cells, and its binding rate was significantly higher than that of Her2-negative cells (P < 0.001). In vitro, the agent had capabilities for contrast-enhanced US imaging as well as T2-weighted MR imaging with a relatively high relaxivity (r2 = 441.47 mM−1 s−1). Furthermore, the Her2 functionalization of the agent prominently enhanced the US/MR molecular imaging effect of targeted cells by cell-specific binding. Live/dead cell assay and targeted photothermal cytotoxicity experiments confirmed that Her2-GPH NPs could serve as effective photoabsorbers to specifically induce SKBR3 cell death upon near-infrared laser irradiation. In summary, Her2-GPH NPs were demonstrated to be novel targeted theranostic agents with great potential to facilitate early non-invasive diagnosis and adjuvant therapy of breast cancer.

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