Sustained Release of Antibody-Conjugated DNA Nanocarriers from a Novel Injectable Hydrogel for Targeted Cell Depletion to Treat Cataract Posterior Capsule Opacification

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Purpose: To compare a novel, sustained release formulation and a bolus injection of a targeted nanocarrier for the ability to specifically deplete cells responsible for the development of posterior capsule opacification (PCO) in week-long, dynamic cell cultures. Methods: A novel, injectable, thermosensitive poly(D,L-lactic-co-glycolic acid)-b-poly(ethylene glycol)-b-poly(D,L-lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA-PEG-PLGA) triblock copolymer hydrogel was engineered for the sustained release of targeted, nucleic acid nanocarriers loaded with cytotoxic doxorubicin (G8:3DNA:Dox). Human rhabdomyosarcoma (RD) cells were used due to their expression of brain-specific angiogenesis inhibitor 1 (BAI1), a specific marker for the myofibroblasts responsible for PCO. Under constant media flow, nanocarriers were injected into cell cultures as either a bolus or within the hydrogel. Cells were fixed and stained every other day for 7 days to compare targeted depletion of BAI1+ cells. Results: The formulation transitions to a gel at physiological temperatures, is optically clear, noncytotoxic, and can release G8:3DNA:Dox nanocarriers for up to 4 weeks. In RD cell cultures, G8:3DNA:Dox nanocarriers specifically eliminated BAI1+ cells. The bolus nanocarrier dose showed significantly reduced cell depletion overtime, while the sustained release of nanocarriers showed increased cell depletion over time. By day 7, <2% of BAI1+ cells were depleted by the bolus injection and 74.2% BAI1+ cells were targeted by the sustained release of nanocarriers. Conclusions: The sustained release of nanocarriers from the hydrogel allows for improved therapeutic delivery in a dynamic system. This method can offer a more effective and efficient method of prophylactically treating PCO after cataract surgery.

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Journal of Ocular Pharmacology and Therapeutics

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This article was published in Journal of Ocular Pharmacology and Therapeutics.

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Copyright © 2022 Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.

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