Rod-based urchin-like hollow microspheres of Bi2S3: Facile synthesis, photo-controlled drug release for photoacoustic imaging and chemo-photothermal therapy of tumor ablation

Chenyang Zhang, Dongdong Li, Pei Pei, Wanni Wang, Benjin Chen, Zhaoyou Chu, Zhengbao Zha, Xianzhu Yang, Jinbing Wang, Haisheng Qian
Hollow nanostructures have been evoked considerable attention owing to their intriguing hollow interior for important and potential applications in drug delivery, lithium battery, catalysis and etc. Herein, Bi2S3 hollow microspheres with rod-based urchin-like nanostructures (denoted as U-BSHM) were synthesized through a facile and rapid ion exchanging method using a particular hard template. The growth mechanism of the U-BSHM has been investigated and illustrated by the morphological evolution of the different samples at early stages. The obtained U-BSHM exhibited strong and wide UV–vis–NIR absorption ability and outstanding photothermal conversion efficiency. Thus, the U-BSHM can be used as spatio-temporal precisely controlled carrier by loading the mixture of 1-tetradecanol (phase change material, PCM) with melting point around 38 °C and hydrophilic chemotherapeutic doxorubicin hydrochloride (denoted as DOX) into the hollow interior to form (PCM + DOX)@Bi2S3 nanocomposites (denoted as PD@BS) for photoacoustic (PA) imaging and chemo-photothermal therapy of the tumors. When exposed to 808 nm near infrared light (NIR) laser irradiation, this nanocomposites could elevate the temperature of the surroundings by absorption and conversion of the NIR photons into heat energy, which inducing the triggered release of DOX from the hollow interior once the temperature reach up to the melting point of PCM. The killing efficiency of the chemo-photothermal therapy was systematically validated both in vitro and in vivo. In the meanwhile, the implanted tumor was completely restrained through PA imaging and combined therapies. Therefore, this kind of urchin-like hollow nanostructures would be used as important candidates for the multimodal bioimaging and therapy of tumors.

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