Natalie M. Barkey1, Christian Preihs2, Heather H. Cornnell3, Gary Martinez4, Kevin N. Sill5, Adam Carie5, Josef Vagner6, Jonathan L. Sessler2, Robert J. Gilles3, David L. Morse3
1Molecular and Functional Imaging , Moffitt Cancer Center, Tampa, FL, United States; 2Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX, United States; 3Molecular and Functional Imaging, Moffitt Cancer Center, Tampa, FL, United States; 4Small Animal Molecular Imaging, Moffitt Cancer Center, Tampa, FL, United States; 5Intezyne Technologies, Inc, Tampa, FL, United States; 6The Bio5 Institute, University of Arizona, Tuscon, AZ, United States
Rationally-designed, polymer-based micelle carriers offer a promising approach to the delivery of therapeutic and/or diagnostic payloads. We have described the synthesis and characterization of MC1R targeted triblock polymer micelles with encapsulated Gd-texaphyrin and Fe(III) crosslinking for stabilization. These micelles selectively target MC1R-expressing melanoma xenograft tumors in vivo. Tumor uptake is not observed with untargeted or unstabilized control micelles. These agents biodegrade and clear systemically without retention in kidney or liver. To the best of our knowledge, this represents the first report of a targeted micelle system that selectively accumulates in the tumor relative to other tissues.