Implantable chemothermal brachytherapy seeds: A synergistic approach to brachytherapy using polymeric dual drug delivery and hyperthermia for malignant solid tumor ablation

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Chemothermal brachytherapy seeds have been developed using a combination of polymeric dual drug chemotherapy and alternating magnetic field induced hyperthermia. The synergistic effect of chemotherapy and hyperthermia brachytherapy has been investigated in a way that has never been performed before, with an in-depth analysis of the cancer cell inhibition property of the new system. A comprehensive in vivo study on athymic mice model with SCC7 tumor has been conducted to determine optimal arrays and specifications of the chemothermal seeds. Dual drug chemotherapy has been achieved via surface deposition of polydopamine that carries bortezomib, and also via loading an acidic pH soluble hydrogel that contains 5-Fluorouracil inside the chemothermal seed; this increases the drug loading capacity of the chemothermal seed, and creates dual drug synergism. An external alternating magnetic field has been utilized to induce hyperthermia conditions, using the inherent ferromagnetic property of the nitinol alloy used as the seed casing. The materials used in this study were fully characterized using FESEM, H1 NMR, FT-IR, and XPS to validate their properties. This new approach to experimental cancer treatment is a pilot study that exhibits the potential of thermal brachytherapy and chemotherapy as a combined treatment modality.

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