Radiolabeled polymeric nanoconstructs loaded with docetaxel and curcumin for cancer combinatorial therapy and nuclear imaging

Cinzia Stigliano, Jaehong Key, Maricela Ramirez, Santosh Aryal, Paolo Decuzzi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Scopus citations


Growing evidence suggests that multifaceted diseases as cancer can be effectively tackled by hitting simultaneously different biological targets and monitoring patient-specific responses. Combinatorial therapies, relying on the administration of two or more molecules with different cytotoxic mechanisms, are rapidly progressing in the clinic. Here, 100 nm spherical polymeric nanoconstructs (SPNs) are proposed for the combinatorial treatment of tumors by codelivering a potent antimitotic drug - docetaxel (DTXL) - and a broad spectrum anti-inflammatory molecule - curcumin (CURC). In vitro, SPNs loaded with DTXL and CURC induce a threefold decrease in IC<inf>50</inf> as compared to DTXL-loaded SPNs. This synergic antitumor effect is also significant in mouse models of glioblastoma multiforme, where, after 22 d of treatment, the combinatorial approach leads to complete disease regression. At 90 d post-treatment initiation, mice injected with DTXL + CURC SPNs have a 100% survival, whereas only 50% of the DTXL SPN treated mice survive. SPNs are also labeled with radioactive <sup>64</sup>Cu(DOTA) molecules to document, via PET imaging, the progressive tumor mass shrinkage. Sensitization of DTXL by CURC is associated with NF-κB downregulation and increased apoptosis. These theranostic nanoconstructs could be used for combinatorial treatment and assessment of therapeutic efficacy in other malignancies. Spherical polymeric nanoconstructs (SPNs) are multifunctional nanoparticles designed for combinatorial therapy and disease management. The platform presented here is used to codeliver docetaxel, a strong antitumor drug, with curcumin as sensitizing agent. SPNs are labeled with <sup>64</sup>Cu for PET imaging to detect the delivery of SPNs and follow the therapy efficacy over time. This combinatorial approach is successful in glioblastoma xenograft mouse model.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3371-3379
Number of pages9
JournalAdvanced Functional Materials
Issue number22
StatePublished - Jun 1 2015


  • chemosensitivity
  • nanoparticles
  • PET imaging
  • theranostics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomaterials
  • Electrochemistry
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials


Dive into the research topics of 'Radiolabeled polymeric nanoconstructs loaded with docetaxel and curcumin for cancer combinatorial therapy and nuclear imaging'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this