External stimuli, such as ultrasound, magnetic field, and light, can be applied to activate in vivo tumor targeting. Herein, we fabricated polymer encapsulated gold nanorods to couple the photothermal properties of gold nanorods and the thermo- and pH-responsive properties of polymers in a single nanocomposite. The activation mechamism was thus transformed from heat to near-infrared (NIR) laser, which can be more easily controlled. Doxorubicin, a clinical anticancer drug, can be loaded into the nanocomposite through electrostatic interactions with high loading content up to 24%. The nanocomposites accumulation in tumor post systematic administration can be significantly enhanced by NIR laser irradiation, providing a prerequisite for their therapeutic application which almost completely inhibited tumor growth and lung metastasis. Since laser can be manipulated very precisely and flexibly, the nanocomposite provides an ideally versatile platform to simultaneously deliver heat and anticancer drugs in a laser-activation mechanism with facile control of the area, time, and dosage. The NIR laser-induced targeted cancer thermo-chemotherapy without using targeting ligands represents a novel targeted anticancer strategy with facile control and practical efficacy.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry