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Biomimetic Hydroxyapatite a Potential Universal Nanocarrier for Cellular Internalization & Drug Delivery

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Functional biomaterials can be used as drug loading devices, components for tissue engineering or as biological probes. As such, the design, synthesis and evaluation of a variety of local-drug delivery structures has been undertaken over the past few decades with the ultimate aim of providing materials that can encapsulate a diverse array of drugs (in terms of their sizes, chemical compositions and chemical natures (i.e. hydrophilic/hydrophobic).


Presented here is the evaluation of specifically hollow 1D structures consisting of nanotubes (NTs) of HAp and their efficacy for cellular internalization using two distinguished anti-cancer model drugs: Paclitaxel (hydrophobic) and Doxorubicin hydrochloride (hydrophilic).


Importantly, it has been observed through this work that HAp NTs consistently showed not only higher drug loading capacity as compared to HAp nanospheres (NSs) but also had better efficacy with respect to cell internalization/encapsulation. The highly porous structure, with large surface area of nanotube morphology, gave the advantage of targeted delivery due to its high drug loading and retention capacity. This was done using the very simple techniques of physical adsorption to load the drug/dye molecules and therefore this can be universally applied to a diverse array of molecules.


Our synthesized nanocarrier can be widely employed in biomedical applications due to its bio-compatible, bio-active and biodegradable properties and as such can be considered to be a universal carrier.

Schematic representation for a comparative study of hydroxyapatite (hollow nanotubes vs solid nanospheres) with variety of drug/ dye molecules

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Acknowledgments and Disclosures

The authors are thankful to Department of Science Technology (DST) Nanomission (SR/NM/NS1145/2012) and Prof. Deepa Khushalani is grateful to DAE for plan funds that supported this work. Dr. Prajakta Dandekar is thankful to Ramanujan Fellowship, DST, Government of India (SR/S2/RJN-139/2011) and Dr. Ratnesh Jain is thankful to Ramalingaswami Fellowship, Department of Biotechnology (DBT) Government of India (BT/RLF/Re-entry/51/2011) for the fellowship and research grant.. The authors acknowledge electron microscopy facility of TIFR and Mr. N. Kulkarni for help with XRD. We would also like to thank Mr. Akhil Krishnan for his assistance in HPLC handling. There are no conflicts to declare.

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Correspondence to Deepa Khushalani or Ratnesh Jain.

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Electronic Supplementary Material “ASSOCIATED CONTENT” statement was deleted, please check if appropriate.The suporting information is available free of charge. Data includes BET Surface area data along with BJH Pore volume measurements, Imaging flow cytometry data, Paclitaxel and Doxorubicin drug loading profile as well weight calculation.


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Srivastav, A., Chandanshive, B., Dandekar, P. et al. Biomimetic Hydroxyapatite a Potential Universal Nanocarrier for Cellular Internalization & Drug Delivery. Pharm Res 36, 60 (2019).

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