This work here presented provides insights over a novel biodegradable polymeric nanosystem made of hyaluronic acid and polyarginine for diaminocyclohexane-platinum (DACHPt) encapsulation. Using mild conditions based on ionic gelation technique, monodispersed blank and DACHPt-loaded nanoparticles (NP) with a size of around 200 nm and negative ζ potential (−35 mV) were obtained. The freeze-drying process was optimized to improve the stability and shelf-life of the developed nanoparticles. After reconstitution, nanoparticles maintained their size showing an association efficiency of around 70% and a high drug loading (8%). In vitro cytotoxicity studies revealed that DACHPt-loaded nanoparticles had a superior anticancer activity compared with oxaliplatin solution. The IC50 was reduced by a factor of two in HT-29 cells (IC50 39 µM vs 74 µM, respectively), and resulted almost 1.3 fold lower in B6KPC3 cells (18 µM vs 23 µM respectively). Whereas toxic effects of both drug and DACHPt-loaded nanoparticles were comparable in the A549 cell line (IC50 11 µM vs 12 µM). DACHPt-loaded nanoparticles were also able to modulate immunogenic cell death (ICD) in vitro. After incubation with B6KPC3 cells, an increase in HMGB1 (high-mobility group box 1) production associated with ATP release occurred. Then, in vivo pharmacokinetic studies were performed after intravenous injection (IV) of DACHPt-loaded nanoparticles and oxaliplatin solution in healthy mice (35.9 µg of platinum equivalent/mouse). An AUC six times higher (24 h * mg/L) than the value obtained following the administration of oxaliplatin solution (3.76 h * mg/L) was found. Cmax was almost five times higher than the control (11.4 mg/L for NP vs 2.48 mg/L). Moreover, the reduction in volume of distribution and clearance clearly indicated a more limited tissue distribution. A simulated repeated IV regimen was performed in silico and showed no accumulation of platinum from the nanoparticles. Overall, the proposed approach discloses a novel nano-oncological treatment based on platinum derivative with improved antitumor activity in vitro and in vivo stability as compared to the free drug.
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