Self-Assembled Aptamer-Nanomedicine for Targeted Chemotherapy and Gene Therapy

Nianxi Zhao, Zihua Zeng, Youli Zu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Scopus citations


Chemotherapy is the mainstream treatment of anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL). However, chemotherapy can cause severe adverse effects in patients because it is not ALCL-specific. In this study, a multifunctional aptamer-nanomedicine (Apt-NMed) achieving targeted chemotherapy and gene therapy of ALCL is developed. Apt-NMed is formulated by self-assembly of synthetic oligonucleotides containing CD30-specific aptamer and anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK)-specific siRNA followed by self-loading of the chemotherapeutic drug doxorubicin (DOX). Apt-NMed exhibits a well-defined nanostructure (diameter 59 mm) and stability in human serum. Under aptamer guidance, Apt-NMed specifically binds and internalizes targeted ALCL cells. Intracellular delivery of Apt-NMed triggers rapid DOX release for targeted ALCL chemotherapy and intracellular delivery of the ALK-specific siRNA induced ALK oncogene silencing, resulting in combined therapeutic effects. Animal model studies reveal that upon systemic administration, Apt-NMed specifically targets and selectively accumulates in ALCL tumor site, but does not react with off-target tumors in the same xenograft mouse. Importantly, Apt-NMed not only induces significantly higher inhibition in ALCL tumor growth, but also causes fewer or no side effects in treated mice compared to free DOX. Moreover, Apt-NMed treatment markedly improves the survival rate of treated mice, opening a new avenue for precision treatment of ALCL.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1702103
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jan 25 2018


  • CD30 receptor
  • anaplastic large T-cell lymphoma (ALCL)
  • anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK)
  • aptamer nanostructures
  • cell-targeted chemotherapy
  • nanomedicine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Biomaterials
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Materials Science(all)


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