Preprint Article Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

Next-Generation Multimodality of Nanomedicine Therapy: Folic Acid Conjugated Copolymer and Folate Receptor Interactions Disrupt Receptor Functionality Resulting in Dual Therapeutic Anti-Cancer Potential in Triple-Negative Breast Cancer

Version 1 : Received: 12 August 2020 / Approved: 14 August 2020 / Online: 14 August 2020 (09:49:17 CEST)

How to cite: DeCarlo, A.; Malardier-Jugroot, C.; R Szewczuk, M. Next-Generation Multimodality of Nanomedicine Therapy: Folic Acid Conjugated Copolymer and Folate Receptor Interactions Disrupt Receptor Functionality Resulting in Dual Therapeutic Anti-Cancer Potential in Triple-Negative Breast Cancer. Preprints 2020, 2020080316 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202008.0316.v1). DeCarlo, A.; Malardier-Jugroot, C.; R Szewczuk, M. Next-Generation Multimodality of Nanomedicine Therapy: Folic Acid Conjugated Copolymer and Folate Receptor Interactions Disrupt Receptor Functionality Resulting in Dual Therapeutic Anti-Cancer Potential in Triple-Negative Breast Cancer. Preprints 2020, 2020080316 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202008.0316.v1).

Abstract

The development of a highly specific drug delivery system (DDS) for anti-cancer therapeutics is an area of intense research focus. Chemical engineering of a “smart” DDS to specifically target tumor cells has gained interest, designed for safer, more efficient, and effective use of chemotherapeutics for the treatment of cancer. However, the selective targeting and choosing the critical cancer surface biomarker are essential for targeted treatments to work. The folic acid receptor alpha (FRalpha) has gained popularity as a potential target in triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC). We have previously reported on a functionalized folic acid (FA)-conjugated amphiphilic alternating copolymer poly(styrene-alt-maleic anhydride) (FA-DABA-SMA) via a biodegradable linker 2,4-diaminobutyric acid (DABA) that has the essential features for efficient “smart” DDS. This biocompatible DDS self-assembles in a pH-dependent manner, providing stimuli-responsive, active targeting, extended-release of hydrophobic chemotherapeutic agents, and can effectively penetrate the inner core of 3-dimensional cancer spheroid models. The empty FA-DABA-SMA decreased spheroid volume, revealing a previously unknown mechanism of action. Upon further investigation, a size- and shape-dependent interaction FA-DABA-SMA with FR reduced the expression of p53, the product of the highly mutated TP53 gene, and additional oncogenic c-Myc and STAT3 proteins. Here, we investigated how this copolymer influences FR behavior and disrupting the receptor’s functions. Results indicate that FA-DABA-SMA increases FR expression levels in breast MDA MB-231 cancer cells and disrupting FR signaling by the reduction in HES1 and NOTCH1 protein expression levels. Also, FA-DABA-SMA induces apoptosis and further causes a change in the morphology of the MDA MB-231 cells, as well as significantly reduces their ability to migrate in a Scratch wound assay. Collectively, these findings provide a novel insight into the functionalized FA-DABA-SMA copolymer. The 350 kDa and 20 kDa copolymers actively target FRα to initialize internationalization. However, only the large size and sheet-shaped 350 kDa copolymers disrupt FRα signaling. The significance of these novel findings reveals the intracellular activity of the copolymer that is critically dependent on the size and structural shape. This report offers novel therapeutic insight into a dual mechanism of FA-DABA-SMA copolymer for its therapeutic potential for the treatment of cancer.

Subject Areas

nanoparticles; FA-DABA-SMA; drug delivery systems; folic acid receptor alpha; intracellular disruptions; invasion and migration; breast cancer

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