Synthesis and functionalization of graphene oxide nanocomposites for anticancer drug delivery

Kamal Mohammed Ahmed Hassan, Heba
Graphene, graphene quantum dots (GQDs) their derivatives and gold nanoparticles (AuNPs), all have a wide range of applications in biomedical applications, particularly anticancer drug delivery, due to their large surface area, chemical and mechanical stability, and good biocompatibility. The first goal of this research is to improve the chemistry and solubility of rGO by doping it with boron and decorating it with AuNPs (Au-B-rGO), as well as to improve the loading efficiency of the anticancer drug doxorubicin (DOX). The second goal is to investigate the effect of boric acid (BA) on anticancer drug delivery when it is combined with graphene oxide quantum dots conjugated with glucosamine (GOQDs-GlcN-BA). FTIR, XPS, XRD, SEM, EDS, and zeta potential analysis were used for characterization of the nanocomposites. The hydrophobic nanocomposites were functionalized with chitosan oligosaccharide to lower the aggregation. However, high functionalization reduced the drug's loading percentage. Replacing chitosan with glucosamine GOQDs-GlcN-DOX, resulted in (57% drug loading) compared to the drug loaded after boric acid addition GOQDs-GlcN-BA-DOX (90%). Only 8% of DOX release occured from GOQDs-GlcN-DOX, in an acidic environment, after 96 h whereas BA addition in the nanocomposite increased DOX release of up to 20%. The morphology and nanosize of the nanoassembly were confirmed by TEM. The nontoxicity of the synthesized bare nanocomposites determined by MTT assay, with cell viability more than 100% at high concentrations, while GOQD-GlcN-BA-DOX exhibited more cytotoxicity against MCF-7 cells compared to GOQD-GlcN-DOX. GOQD-GlcN-BA-DOX shows stronger fluorescence through fluorescence microscopy owing to higher MCF-7 cellular internalization via sialic acid and BA interaction. This thesis shows the addition of BA enhanced the loading and release of anticancer drug, nontoxicity of the system with higher cellular internalization thus superior potential for anticancer drug delivery.


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Citation Formats
H. Kamal Mohammed Ahmed Hassan, “Synthesis and functionalization of graphene oxide nanocomposites for anticancer drug delivery,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2022.