Peptide modified nanocarriers for selective targeting of bombesin receptors

Antonella Accardo, Rosalba Mansi, Anna Morisco, Gaetano Mangiapia, Luigi Paduano, Diego Tesauro, Aurel Radulescu, Michela Aurilio, Luigi Aloj, Claudio Arra, Giancarlo Morelli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The present work describes new supramolecular aggregates obtained by co-assembling two different amphiphilic molecules, one containing the bioactive bombesin peptide (BN), or a scramble sequence, and the other, the DOTA chelating agent, (C18)2DOTA, capable of forming stable complexes with the radioactive 111In(iii) isotope. The peptide in the amphiphilic monomer is spaced by the lipophilic moiety through ethoxylic spacers of different length: a shorter spacer with five units of dioxoethylene moieties in (C18)2L5-peptide, or a longer spacer consisting of a Peg3000 residue in (C18)2Peg3000-peptide. Structural characterization by SANS and DLS techniques indicates that, independently from the presence of the peptide containing monomer in the final composition, the predominant aggregates are liposomes of similar shape and size with a hydrodynamic radius Rh around 200 nm and bilayer thickness, d, of 4 nm. In vitro data show specific binding of the 111In-(C18)2DOTA/(C18)2L5-[7-14] BN 90:10 liposomes in receptor expressing cells. However, the presence of the Peg3000 unit on the external liposomal surface, could hide the peptide and prevent the receptor binding. In vivo experiments using 111In-(C18) 2DOTA/(C18)2L5-[7-14]BN show the expected biological behavior of aggregates of such size and molecular composition, moreover there is an increase in concentration of the GRPR targeting aggregate in the tumors compared to control at the 48 h time point evaluated (2.4% ID/g versus 1.6% ID/g).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)878-887
Number of pages10
JournalMolecular BioSystems
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Molecular Biology


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