Encapsulation of Biologically Functional Nanoparticles — Virus Coating and Drug Nanoparticulation
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Making headway in the field of biomaterials research and specifically in vivo drug delivery using nanoencapsulation is certainly a challenge but the rewards are obvious when considering potential applications in cancer therapy, drug delivery and uses in the potential in the cosmetic industry. As multi-purpose agents nanocapsules not only require a high success rate of encapsulation but also a remarkable stability for targeted drug delivery, viral vector and emulsion nanocapsules which are considered a great match for this purpose. In this research nanocapsules were fabricated using a layer-by-layer technique: polymer layers are alternatively deposited using opposite charges on a bio-core surface. Smart polyelectrolyte nanocapsules are produced that can be successfully uptaken by cells and catalysed to release drugs at a target site. Previous research in this area attempted to use nanocapsules in the range of 600nm resulting in a high rate of cell fatality during uptake. We focus on three projects all in the range of 100nm, a size range predicted to have an even higher success rate for: 1) Oil-dye assisted emulsion nanoencapsulation. 2) Polystyrene latex beads nanoencapsulation. 3) Adenovirus nanoencapsulation. The characterization of nanocapsules included Confocal Laser Scanning Microscopy (CLSM), Dynamic Light Scattering (DLS), Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM) and Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM). Polymer layering is examined for stability, successful encapsulation and their biocompatibility. Fabrication smart oil-dye assisted nanocapsules containing water insoluble drugs are using a solvent evaporation to shrink the microcapsules to nanocapsules. With regards to the successful encapsulation of latex beads it is shown that direct polymer deposition on the adenovirus surface could significantly increase the speed of assembly and reduces complexity in fabrication. Adenovirus nanocapsules are examined using the above methods as well as a cell study based on gene expression showing that the capsules successfully infect cells with the virus without causing cell fatalities.
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