Multiscale Simulation as a Framework for the Enhanced Design of Nanodiamond-Polyethylenimine-based Gene Delivery.
ABSTRACT: Nanodiamonds (NDs) are emerging carbon platforms with promise as gene/drug delivery vectors for cancer therapy. Specifically, NDs functionalized with the polymer polyethylenimine (PEI) can transfect small interfering RNAs (siRNA) in vitro with high efficiency and low cytotoxicity. Here we present a modeling framework to accurately guide the design of ND-PEI gene platforms and elucidate binding mechanisms between ND, PEI, and siRNA. This is among the first ND simulations to comprehensively account for ND size, charge distribution, surface functionalization, and graphitization. The simulation results are compared with our experimental results both for PEI loading onto NDs and for siRNA (C-myc) loading onto ND-PEI for various mixing ratios. Remarkably, the model is able to predict loading trends and saturation limits for PEI and siRNA, while confirming the essential role of ND surface functionalization in mediating ND-PEI interactions. These results demonstrate that this robust framework can be a powerful tool in ND platform development, with the capacity to realistically treat other nanoparticle systems.
Project description:Nanodiamonds (NDs) are promising candidates in nanomedicine, demonstrating significant potential as gene/drug delivery platforms for cancer therapy. We have synthesized ND vectors capable of chemotherapeutic loading and delivery with applications towards chemoresistant leukemia. The loading of Daunorubicin (DNR) onto NDs was optimized by adjusting reaction parameters such as acidity and concentration. The resulting conjugate, a novel therapeutic payload for NDs, was characterized extensively for size, surface charge, and loading efficiency. A K562 human myelogenous leukemia cell line, with multidrug resistance conferred by incremental DNR exposure, was used to demonstrate the efficacy enhancement resulting from ND-based delivery. While resistant K562 cells were able to overcome treatment from DNR alone, as compared with non-resistant K562 cells, NDs were able to improve DNR delivery into resistant K562 cells. By overcoming efflux mechanisms present in this resistant leukemia line, ND-enabled therapeutics have demonstrated the potential to improve cancer treatment efficacy, especially towards resistant strains.The authors of this study demonstrate superior treatment properties of resistant leukemia cell lines by utilizing nanodiamond vectors loaded with daunorubicin, paving the way to clinical studies in the hopefully not too distant future.
Project description:Nanodiamonds (NDs) are carbon nanomaterials with a core diamond crystalline structure and crystal defects, such as graphitic carbon and heteroatoms, on their surface. For electrochemistry, NDs are promising to increase active sites and decrease fouling, but NDs have not been studied for neurotransmitter electrochemistry. Here, we optimized ND coatings on microelectrodes and found that ND increases the sensitivity for neurotransmitters with fast-scan cyclic voltammetry detection and decreases electrochemical and biofouling. Different sizes and functionalizations of NDs were tested, and ND suspensions were drop-casted onto carbon-fiber microelectrodes (CFMEs). The 5 nm ND-H and 5 nm ND-COOH formed thick coatings, while the 15 and 60 nm ND-COOH formed more sparse coatings. With electrochemical impedance spectroscopy, 5 nm ND-H and 5 nm ND-COOH had high charge-transfer resistance, while 15 and 60 nm ND-COOH had low charge-transfer resistance. ND-COOH (15 nm) was optimal, with the best electrocatalytic properties and current for dopamine. Sensitivity was enhanced 2.1 ± 0.2 times and the limit of detection for dopamine improved to 3 ± 1 nM. ND coating increased current for other cations such as serotonin, norepinephrine, and epinephrine, but not for the anion ascorbic acid. Moreover, NDs decreased electrochemical fouling from serotonin and 5-hydroxyindoleacetic acid, and they also decreased biofouling in brain slice tissue by 50%. The current at biofouled ND-coated electrodes is similar to the signal of pristine, unfouled CFMEs. The carboxylated ND-modified CFMEs are beneficial for neurotransmitter detection because of easy fabrication, improved limit of detection, and antifouling properties.
Project description:Nanodiamonds (NDs) have attracted considerable attention as drug delivery nanocarriers due to their low cytotoxicity and facile surface functionalization. Given these features, NDs have been recently investigated for the fabrication of nanocomposite hydrogels for tissue engineering. Here we report the synthesis of a hydrogel using photocrosslinkable gelatin methacrylamide (GelMA) and NDs as a three-dimensional scaffold for drug delivery and stem cell-guided bone regeneration. We investigated the effect of different concentration of NDs on the physical and mechanical properties of the GelMA hydrogel network. The inclusion of NDs increased the network stiffness, which in turn augmented the traction forces generated by human adipose stem cells (hASCs). We also tested the ability of NDs to adsorb and modulate the release of a model drug dexamethasone (Dex) to promote the osteogenic differentiation of hASCs. The ND-Dex complexes modulated gene expression, cell area, and focal adhesion number in hASCs. Moreover, the integration of the ND-Dex complex within GelMA hydrogels allowed a higher retention of Dex over time, resulting in significantly increased alkaline phosphatase activity and calcium deposition of encapsulated hASCs. These results suggest that conventional GelMA hydrogels can be coupled with conjugated NDs to develop a novel platform for bone tissue engineering.
Project description:Nanoparticle-cell interactions begin with the cellular uptake of the nanoparticles, a process that eventually determines their cellular fate. In the present work, we show that the morphological features of nanodiamonds (NDs) affect both the anchoring and internalization stages of their endocytosis. While a prickly ND (with sharp edges/corners) has no trouble of anchoring onto the plasma membrane, it suffers from difficult internalization afterwards. In comparison, the internalization of a round ND (obtained by selective etching of the prickly ND) is not limited by its lower anchoring amount and presents a much higher endocytosis amount. Molecular dynamics simulation and continuum modelling results suggest that the observed difference in the anchoring of round and prickly NDs likely results from the reduced contact surface area with the cell membrane of the former, while the energy penalty associated with membrane curvature generation, which is lower for a round ND, may explain its higher probability of the subsequent internalization.
Project description:Nanodiamonds (NDs) are an emerging class of engineered nanomaterials that hold great promise for the next generation of bionanotechnological products to be used for drug and gene delivery, or for bio-imaging and biosensing. Previous studies have shown that upon their cellular uptake, NDs exhibit high biocompatibility in various in vitro and in vivo set-ups. Herein we hypothesized that the increased NDs biocompatibility is a result of minimum membrane perturbations and their reduced ability to induce disruption or damage during cellular translocation. Using multi-scale combinatorial approaches that simulate ND-membrane interactions, we correlated NDs real-time cellular uptake and kinetics with the ND-induced membrane fluctuations to derive energy requirements for the uptake to occur. Our discrete and real-time analyses showed that the majority of NDs internalization occurs within 2 h of cellular exposure, however, with no effects on cellular viability, proliferation or cellular behavior. Furthermore, our simulation analyses using coarse-grained models identified key changes in the energy profile, membrane deformation and recovery time, all functions of the average ND or ND-based agglomerate size. Understanding the mechanisms responsible for ND-cell membrane interactions could possibly advance their implementation in various biomedical applications.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>This study investigated the use of nanodiamond particles (NDs) as a promising material for drug delivery in vivo and in vitro.<h4>Methods</h4>HepG2 cells (a human hepatic carcinoma cell line) were used to determine the characteristics of a nanodiamond-doxorubicin complex (ND-DOX) when taken up by cells in vitro using laser scanning confocal microscopy and dialysis experiments. We also compared the survival rate and histopathology of tumor-bearing mice after treatment with NDs or ND-DOX in vivo.<h4>Results</h4>In vitro investigation showed that ND-DOX has slow and sustained drug release characteristics compared with free doxorubicin. In vivo, the survival rate of tumor-bearing mice treated with ND-DOX was four times greater than that of mice treated with free doxorubicin. Interestingly, the survival rate in mice treated with NDs alone was close to that of mice treated with free doxorubicin. This indicates that treatment with ND-DOX can prolong the lifespan of tumor-bearing mice significantly compared with conventional doxorubicin and that NDs can have this effect as well. Histopathological analysis showed that neither the NDs nor ND-DOX were toxic to the kidney, liver, or spleen in contrast with the well-known toxic effects of free doxorubicin on the kidney and liver. Further, both the bare NDs and ND-DOX could suppress tumor growth effectively.<h4>Conclusion</h4>NDs can potentially prolong survival, and ND-DOX may act as a nanodrug with promising chemotherapeutic efficacy and safety.
Project description:The poor intracellular uptake and non-specific binding of anticancer drugs into cancer cells are the bottlenecks in cancer therapy. Nanocarrier platforms provide the opportunities to improve the drug efficacy. Here we show a carbon-based nanomaterial nanodiamond (ND) that carried paclitaxel (PTX), a microtubule inhibitor, and cetuximab (Cet), a specific monoclonal antibody against epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR), inducing mitotic catastrophe and tumor inhibition in human colorectal cancer (CRC). ND-PTX blocked the mitotic progression, chromosomal separation, and induced apoptosis in the CRC cells; however, NDs did not induce these effects. Conjugation of ND-PTX with Cet (ND-PTX-Cet) was specifically binding to the EGFR-positive CRC cells and enhanced the mitotic catastrophe and apoptosis induction. Besides, ND-PTX-Cet markedly decreased tumor size in the xenograft EGFR-expressed human CRC tumors of nude mice. Moreover, ND-PTX-Cet induced the mitotic marker protein phospho-histone 3 (Ser10) and apoptotic protein active-caspase 3 for mitotic catastrophe and apoptosis. Taken together, this study demonstrated that the co-delivery of PTX and Cet by ND enhanced the effects of mitotic catastrophe and apoptosis in vitro and in vivo, which may be applied in the human CRC therapy.
Project description:Detonation nanodiamonds (NDs) are promising drug delivery and imaging agents due to their uniquely faceted surfaces with diverse chemical groups, electrostatic properties, and biocompatibility. Based on the potential to harness ND properties to clinically address a broad range of disease indications, this work reports the in-human administration of NDs through the development of ND-embedded gutta percha (NDGP), a thermoplastic biomaterial that addresses reinfection and bone loss following root canal therapy (RCT). RCT served as the first clinical indication for NDs since the procedure sites involved nearby circulation, localized administration, and image-guided treatment progress monitoring, which are analogous to many clinical indications. This randomized, single-blind interventional treatment study evaluated NDGP equivalence with unmodified GP. This progress report assessed one control-arm and three treatment-arm patients. At 3-mo and 6-mo follow-up appointments, no adverse events were observed, and lesion healing was confirmed in the NDGP-treated patients. Therefore, this study is a foundation for the continued clinical translation of NDs and other nanomaterials for a broad spectrum of applications.
Project description:<h4>Purpose</h4>Detonation nanodiamonds (NDs) are carbon-based nanomaterials that, because of their size (4-5 nm), stable inert core, alterable surface chemistry, fluorescence, and biocompatibility, are emerging as bioimaging agents and promising tools for the delivery of biochemical molecules into cellular systems. However, diamond particles possess a strong propensity to aggregate in liquid formulation media, restricting their applicability in biomedical sciences. Here, the authors describe the covalent functionalization of NDs with lysine in an attempt to develop nanoparticles able to act as suitable nonviral vectors for transferring genetic materials across cellular membranes.<h4>Methods</h4>NDs were oxidized and functionalized by binding lysine moieties attached to a three-carbon-length linker (1,3-diaminopropane) to their surfaces through amide bonds. Raman and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, zeta potential measurement, dynamic light scattering, atomic force microscopic imaging, and thermogravimetric analysis were used to characterize the lysine-functionalized NDs. Finally, the ability of the functionalized diamonds to bind plasmid DNA and small interfering RNA was investigated by gel electrophoresis assay and through size and zeta potential measurements.<h4>Results</h4>NDs were successfully functionalized with the lysine linker, producing surface loading of 1.7 mmol g(-1) of ND. These modified NDs formed highly stable aqueous dispersions with a zeta potential of 49 mV and particle size of approximately 20 nm. The functionalized NDs were found to be able to bind plasmid DNA and small interfering RNA by forming nanosized "diamoplexes".<h4>Conclusion</h4>The lysine-substituted ND particles generated in this study exhibit stable aqueous formulations and show potential for use as carriers for genetic materials.
Project description:In this work, several optical-spectroscopic methods have been used to visualize and investigate the penetration of diamond nanoparticles (NPs) of various sizes (3-150 nm), surface structures and fluorescence properties into the animal skin in vitro. Murine skin samples have been treated with nanodiamond (ND) water suspensions and studied using optical coherence tomography (OCT), confocal and two-photon fluorescence microscopy and fluorescence lifetime imaging (FLIM). An analysis of the optical properties of the used nanodiamonds (NDs) enables the selection of optimal optical methods or their combination for the study of nanodiamond-skin interaction. Among studied NDs, particles of 100 nm in nominal size were shown to be appropriate for multimodal imaging using all three methods. All the applied NDs were able to cross the skin barrier and penetrate the different layers of the epidermis to finally arrive in the hair follicle niches. The results suggest that NDs have the potential for multifunctional applications utilizing multimodal imaging.