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Molecular imaging of telomerase and the enzyme activity-triggered drug release by using a conformation-switchable nanoprobe in cancerous cells.

A new interesting article has been published in Sci Rep. 2018 Nov 5;8(1):16341. doi: 10.1038/s41598-018-34670-7. and titled:

Molecular imaging of telomerase and the enzyme activity-triggered drug release by using a conformation-switchable nanoprobe in cancerous cells.

Authors of this article are:

Shi H, Gao T, Shi L, Chen T, Xiang Y, Li Y, Li G.

A summary of the article is shown below:

So far, the development of a unique strategy for specific biomolecules activity monitoring and precise drugs release in cancerous cells is still challenging. Here, we designed a conformation-switchable smart nanoprobe to monitor telomerase activity and to enable activity-triggered drug release in cancerous cells. The straightforward nanoprobe contained a gold nanoparticle (AuNP) core and a dense layer of 5-carboxyfluorescein (FAM)-labeled hairpin DNA shell. The 3′ region of hairpin DNA sequence could function as the telomerase primer to be elongated in the presence of telomerase, resulting in the conformational switch of hairpin DNA. As a result, the FAM fluorescence was activated and the anticancer drug doxorubicin (Dox) molecules which intercalated into the stem region of the hairpin DNA sequence were released into cancerous cells simultaneously. The smart method could specifically distinguish cancerous cells from normal cells based on telomerase activity. It also showed a good performance for monitoring telomerase activity in the cytoplasm by molecular imaging and precise release of Dox triggered by telomerase activity in cancerous cells. These advantages may offer a great potential of this method for monitoring telomerase activity in cancer progression and estimating therapeutic effect.

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