Schematic representation of PEGylated Lipid bilayer coated mesoporous silica nanoparticles (PLMSNs), which co-encapsulate paclitaxel (Tax) and curcumin (Cur).
Highly ordered mesoporous silica nanoparticles (MSNs) with pore diameter of 2.754 nm and particle size of 115 ± 15 nm were prepared with etching method. Homogeneous PEGylated lipid bilayer with 10–15 nm thickness was coated around the surface of MSNs using film hydration method. Systematic optimization and characterization of co-encapsulation process of paclitaxel (Tax) and curcumin (Cur) into PEGylated lipid bilayer coated mesoporous silica nanoparticles (PLMSNs) were performed carrying out single factor test, associated with Box-Behnken Design. The concentration of encapsulated drugs was measured by reversed phase high performance liquid chromatography (RP-HPLC) method. Optimal factor settings were as follows: 50 mg MSNs, ratio of MSNs to lipid (w/w) = 1:1.11, and ratio of lipid to CHO (w/w) = 3.93:1. The average experimental EETax, EECur and stability score value were (77.48 ± 2.73) %, (30.70 ± 3.56) % and 4 point respectively based on the conditions mentioned above. Morphology determination of Tax-Cur-PLMSNs revealed that the composite nanoparticles were spherical particals with uniform dispersion. In vitro release experiment indicated that PLMSNs improved dissolution of Tax compared to Tax powder suspension and exhibited sustained release property. Tax-Cur-PLMSNs manifested definite and persistently promoted cytotoxic effect against canine breast cancer cells. This prolonged and enhanced activity of Tax-Cur-PLMSNs might contribute to its sustained release effect.