Folate-encoded and Fe3O4-loaded polymeric micelles for dual targeting of cancer cells

Xiaoqiang Yang, Yinghua Chen, Renxu Yuan, Guihua Chen, Elvin Blanco, Jinming Gao, Xintao Shuai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

132 Scopus citations


Diblock copolymers of poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) and poly(ε-caprolactone) (PCL) bearing a tumor-targeting ligand, folate, were self-assembled into micelles. Superparamagnetic iron oxide (SPIO) nanoparticles and an anticancer drug doxorubicin (DOX) were coencapsulated within the micelles less than 100 nm in diameters. These SPIO-DOX-loaded micelles were superparamagnetic at room temperature, but turned ferrimagnetic at 10 K, consistent with magnetic properties of primary SPIO nanoparticles. Cell culture experiments demonstrated the potential of these polymeric micelles as an effective dual targeting nanoplatform for the delivery of anticancer drugs. Folate attachment to micelles resulted in the recognition of the micelles by tumor cells over-expressing folate receptors, leading to facilitation in cellular uptake of micelles, and the transport efficiency of the SPIO-loaded and folate-functionalized micelles into the tumor cells can be further enhanced by applying an external magnetic field to the cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3477-3485
Number of pages9
Issue number16
StatePublished - Jul 28 2008


  • Block copolymers
  • Drug delivery
  • Micelles

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Organic Chemistry
  • Polymers and Plastics


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