Multifunctional WS2@Poly(ethylene imine) Nanoplatforms for Imaging Guided Gene-Photothermal Synergistic Therapy of Cancer

Chunfang Zhang, Yuan Yong, Li Song, Xinghua Dong, Xiao Zhang, Xiangfeng Liu, Zhanjun Gu, Yuliang Zhao, Zhongbo Hu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

79 Scopus citations


The combination of photothermal therapy (PTT) with gene therapy (GT) to improve PTT efficiency and thus eliminate cancer cells under mild hyperthermia is highly needed. Herein, multifunctional WS2@poly(ethylene imine) (WS2@PEI) nanoplatform has been designed and constructed for gene-photothermal synergistic therapy of tumors at mild condition. After a surface modification of WS2 with a positively charged PEI, the as-prepared WS2@PEI nanoplatform can not only act as an efficient survivin-siRNA carrier for GT but also exhibit remarkable near-infrared (NIR) photothermal effects for PTT. On the one hand, the photothermal effects induced by WS2@PEI upon NIR irradiation can enhance the cellular uptake owing to the increase of the cell membrane permeability, which leads to the remarkable enhancement of silencing efficiency of survivin. On the other hand, the silencing of survivin can increase the apoptosis as well as reduce the heat resistance of cancer cells by downregulating the heat shock protein 70 expressions, which greatly enhance the sensitivity of cancer cells to PTT. As a result, compared to PTT or GT treatment alone, WS2@PEI mediated synergistic GT/PTT therapy remarkably enhances in vitro cancer cell damage and in vivo tumor elimination.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2776-2787
Number of pages12
JournalAdvanced Healthcare Materials
Issue number21
StatePublished - Nov 9 2016


  • WS@PEI nanoplatform
  • X-ray computed tomography
  • gene therapy
  • mild hyperthermia
  • photoaccoustic imaging
  • photothermal therapy
  • synergistic therapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Pharmaceutical Science


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