Development of transferrin-bearing vesicles encapsulating aspirin for cancer therapy

Sakpakdeejaroen, Intouch and Somani, Sukrut and Mullin, Margaret and Dufès, Christine (2019) Development of transferrin-bearing vesicles encapsulating aspirin for cancer therapy. Journal of Liposome Research, 30 (2). pp. 174-181. ISSN 0898-2104 (

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Originally developed for the treatment of inflammatory disorders, the non-steroidal antiinflammatory drug aspirin was shown to have a preventive effect against cancer in the past decades. Most importantly, recent studies suggested that it might also provide a therapeutic benefit in the treatment of cancer in vitro. However, this drug failed to specifically reach tumors at a therapeutic concentration following intravenous administration, thus resulting in lack of efficacy on tumors. In this work, we demonstrated that aspirin could be formulated in transferrin-bearing vesicles and that this tumor-targeted formulation could lead to an increase in the anti-proliferative efficacy of the drug in three cancer cell lines in vitro. The in vitro therapeutic efficacy of aspirin was significantly improved when formulated in transferrin-bearing vesicles, by about 2-fold compared to that of drug solution. These results are promising and support the optimization of this delivery system to further improve its potential as a therapeutic tool in combination with other anti-cancer therapies.