Sonopermeation with Nanoparticle-Stabilized Microbubbles Reduces Solid Stress and Improves Nanomedicine Delivery to Tumors

Einar Sulheim, Ingunn Hanson, Sofie Snipstad, Krister Vikedal, Yrr Mørch, Yves Boucher, Catharina de Lange Davies
Advanced Therapeutics2021
Drug delivery to tumors is challenging due to biological barriers obstructing effective delivery. Sonopermeation with ultrasound and microbubbles has been shown to improve therapeutic effect of many classes of drugs, but the underlying mechanism is not fully understood. In this study, two subcutaneous xenograft tumor models, that differed substantially in blood vessel density and stiffness, is treated with poly(alkyl cyanoacrylate) nanoparticles and nanoparticle-stabilized microbubbles combined with ultrasound. Improved nanoparticle accumulation and extracellular matrix (ECM) penetration is found. The stiffness and solid stress in the tumors are measured and it is discovered that sonopermeation can reduce the solid stress in both models, with the highest effect in the stiffest tumor model. This suggests that sonopermeation affects not only the blood vessel wall which has been described previously, but also the ECM to reduce solid stress and increase diffusion and transport of nanomedicines.
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