A biodistribution study of PEGylated PCL-based nanoparticles in C57BL/6 mice bearing B16/F10 melanoma

M. Lupi, C. Colombo, R. Frapolli, R. Ferrari, L. Sitia, L. Dragoni, E. Bello, S. A. Licandro, F. Falcetta, P. Ubezio, P. Bigini, M. Salmona, M. D'Incalci, M. Morbidelli, D. Moscatelli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


One of the major drawbacks that limits the clinical application of nanoparticles is the lack of preliminary investigations related to their biocompatibility, biodegradability and biodistribution. In this work, biodegradable PEGylated polymer nanoparticles (NPs) have been synthesized by using macromonomers based on poly(ε-caprolaconte) oligomers. More in detail, NPs have been produced by adopting a surfactant-free semibatch emulsion polymerization process using PEG chains as a stabilizing agent. The NPs were also labeled with rhodamine B covalently bound to the NPs to quantitatively study their biodistribution in vivo. NPs were investigated in both in vitro and in vivo preclinical systems to study their biodistribution in mice bearing B16/F10 melanoma, as well as their biocompatibility and biodegradability. The NP concentration was evaluated in different tissues at several times after intravenous injection. The disappearance of the NPs from the plasma was biphasic, with distribution and elimination half-lives of 30 min and 15 h, respectively. NPs were retained in tumors and in filter organs for a long time, were still detectable after 7 d and maintained a steady concentration in the tumor for 120 h. 48 h after injection, 70± 15% of the inoculated NPs were excreted in the feces. The favorable tumor uptake, fast excretion and absence of cytotoxicity foster the further development of produced NPs as drug delivery carriers.

Original languageEnglish
Article number335706
Issue number33
Publication statusPublished - Aug 22 2014


  • B16/F10 melanoma
  • biodistribution
  • emulsion polymerization
  • nanoparticles
  • poly ethylene glyco
  • poly-ε-caprolactone

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Bioengineering
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Medicine(all)


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