PEG-farnesylthiosalicylate conjugate as a nanomicellar carrier for delivery of paclitaxel

Xiaolan Zhang, Jianqin Lu, Yixian Huang, Wenchen Zhao, Yichao Chen, Jiang Li, Xiang Gao, Raman Venkataramanan, Ming Sun, Donna Beer Stolz, Lin Zhang, Song Li

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Scopus citations


S-trans, trans-farnesylthiosalicylic acid (FTS) is a synthetic small molecule that acts as a potent and especially nontoxic Ras antagonist. It inhibits both oncogenically activated Ras and growth factor receptor-mediated Ras activation, resulting in the inhibition of Ras-dependent tumor growth. In this work, an FTS conjugate with poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) through a labile ester linkage, PEG5K-FTS2(L), was developed. PEG 5K-FTS2 conjugate readily forms micelles in aqueous solutions with a critical micelle concentration of 0.68 μM, and hydrophobic drugs such as paclitaxel (PTX) could be effectively loaded into these particles. Both drug-free and PTX-loaded micelles were spherical in shape with a uniform size of 20-30 nm. The release of PTX from PTX-loaded PEG5K-FTS 2 micelles was significantly slower than that from Taxol formulation. In vitro cytotoxicity studies with several tumor cell lines showed that PEG5K-FTS2(L) was comparable to FTS in antitumor activity. Western immunoblotting showed that total Ras levels were downregulated in several cancer cell lines treated with FTS or PEG5K-FTS 2(L). The micellar formulation of PTX exhibited more in vitro cytotoxic activity against several tumor cell lines compared with free PTX, suggesting a possible synergistic effect between the carrier and the codelivered drug. The antitumor activity of the PTX loaded PEG5K-FTS 2(L) micelles in a syngeneic murine breast cancer model was found to be significantly higher than that of Taxol, which may be attributed to their preferential tumor accumulation and a possible synergistic effect between PEG5K-FTS2 carrier and loaded PTX.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)464-472
Number of pages9
JournalBioconjugate Chemistry
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 20 2013
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Bioengineering
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmaceutical Science
  • Organic Chemistry

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