Optimization and in-vitro/in-vivo evaluation of doxorubicin-loaded chitosan-alginate nanoparticles using a melanoma mouse model
The present study evaluates the potential of encapsulated doxorubicin to reduce both the viability of melanoma cells and the tumor growth in a mouse melanoma model. The prepared doxorubicin loaded chitosan/alginate nanoparticles possessed mean diameter around 300 nm and negative zeta-potential. Classical molecular dynamic simulations revealed that the high encapsulation efficiency (above 90%) was mainly due to electrostatic interaction between doxorubicin and sodium alginate, although dipole-dipole and hydrophobic interactions might also contribute. The in vitro dissolution tests showed slower doxorubicin release in slightly alkaline medium (pH = 7.4) and faster release in acid one (pH = 5.5), indicating that higher concentration of doxorubicin might reach the acidic tumor tissue. The free and the encapsulated doxorubicin decreased the viability of melanoma cell lines (B16-F10 and B16-OVA) in a similar degree. However, the cytotoxic effect of the encapsulated doxorubicin still occurred in the more resistant B16-F10 cells even after removing the extracellular drug. The experiments on a syngeneic melanoma mouse model revealed that free and encapsulated doxorubicin elicited the control of the tumor growth (dose of 3 mg/kg). Thus, the encapsulation of doxorubicin into chitosan/alginate nanoparticles could be considered advantageous because of the better intracellular accumulation and longer cytotoxic effect on the investigated melanoma cells.