Hyperthermia-induced targeting of thermosensitive gene carriers to tumors
Schwerdt A., Zintchenko A., Concia M., Roesen N., Fisher K., Lindner LH., Issels R., Wagner E., Ogris M.
Locoregional hyperthermia (HT) can be used for site-directed activation of macromolecular drug delivery systems. We have developed a gene delivery system based on thermosensitive block copolymers (TSCs) with a phase transition temperature of 42°C [Zintchenko, A., Ogris, M., and Wagner, E. (2006). Bioconjug. Chem. 17, 766-772], in which the statistical copolymer of vinylpyrrolidinone and N-isopropylacryamide is grafted on polyethylenimine (PEI). Here we applied polyplexes consisting of plasmid DNA and TSCs systemically in A/J mice bearing a syngeneic Neuro2A neuroblastoma tumor subcutaneously in each hind limb. One limb was selectively treated by HT at 42°C, at the same time that polyplexes were injected via the tail vein. Hyperthermia led to increased accumulation of thermosensitive polymer and aggregation of thermosensitive polyplexes in HT-treated tumors, resulting in up to 10-fold increased DNA deposition compared with non-HT-treated tumor. The level of transgene expression induced by TSC polyplexes in HT-treated tumors was significantly higher and selective for tumor tissue. With nonthermosensitive PEI polyplexes HT did not influence transgene deposition or expression in tumor. © Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. 2008.