Efficacy evaluation and mechanism study on inhibition of breast cancer cell growth by multimodal targeted fluorescent nanobubbles carrying AMD070 and ICG

Daijia Shen, Lianhua Zhu, Yu Liu, Yanli Peng, Minmin Lan, Kejing Fang, Deng Liu, Yanli Guo
Objective: To construct targeted nanobubbles carrying both small-molecule CXCR4 antagonist AMD070 and light-absorbing material indocyanine green (ICG), and to study their in vitro multimodal imaging, as well as their mechanism and efficacy of inhibition of breast cancer cell growth. Methods: Nanobubbles carrying AMD070 and ICG (ICG-TNBs) were constructed by carbodiimide reaction and mechanical oscillation. The physical characteristics and in vitro multimodal imaging were determined. The binding potential of ICG-TNBs to human breast cancer cells were observed by laser confocal microscopy. CCK-8 and flow cytometry were used to analyze the role of ICG-TNBs+US in inhibiting proliferation and inducing apoptosis of tumor cells. Flow cytometry and Western blotting are used to analyse the ROS generation and molecular mechanisms. Results: ICG-TNBs had a particle size of 497.0±29.2 nm and a Zeta potential of -8.05±0.73 mV. In vitro multimodal imaging showed that the image signal intensity of ICG-TNBs increased with concentration. Targeted binding assay confirmed that ICG-TNBs could specifically bind to MCF-7 cells (CXCR4 positive), but not to MDA-MB-468 cells (CXCR4 negative). CCK-8 assay and flow cytometry analysis showed that ICG-TNBs+US could significantly inhibit the growth of MCF-7 breast cancer cells and promote their apoptosis. Flow cytometry and Western blotting showed that ICG-TNBs+US could significantly raise generation of ROS, reduce the expression of CXCR4,inhibit phosphorylation of Akt, and increase the expression of Caspase3 and Cleaved-caspase3. This indicated that ICG-TNBs could effectively inhibit and block the SDF-1/CXCR4 pathway, thus leading to the apoptosis of MCF-7 cells. Conclusion: ICG-TNBs can specifically bind to CXCR4 positive breast cancer cells, furthermore inhibit growth and promote apoptosis of breast cancer cells combined with ultrasonic irradiation by blocking the SDF-1/CXCR4 pathway. This study introduces a novel concept, method and mechanism for integration of targeted diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer.

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