Nano-calcipotriol as a potent anti-hepatic fibrosis agent

MedComm (2020). 2023 Aug 26;4(5):e354. doi: 10.1002/mco2.354. eCollection 2023 Oct.


Calcipotriol (CAL) has been widely studied as a fibrosis inhibitor and used to treat plaque psoriasis via transdermal administration. The clinical application of CAL to treat liver fibrosis is bottlenecked by its unsatisfactory pharmacokinetics, biodistribution, and side effects, such as hypercalcemia in patients. The exploration of CAL as a safe and effective antifibrotic agent remains a major challenge. Therefore, we rationally designed and synthesized a self-assembled drug nanoparticle encapsulating CAL in its internal hydrophobic core for systematic injection (termed NPs/CAL) and further investigated the beneficial effect of the nanomaterial on liver fibrosis. C57BL/6 mice were used as the animal model, and human hepatic stellate cell line LX-2 was used as the cellular model of hepatic fibrogenesis. Immunofluorescence staining, flow cytometry, western blotting, immunohistochemical staining, and in vitro imaging were used for evaluating the efficacy of NPs/CAL treatment. We found NPs/CAL can be quickly internalized in vitro, thus potently deactivating LX-2 cells. In addition, NPs/CAL improved blood circulation and the accumulation of CAL in liver tissue. Importantly, NPs/CAL strongly contributed to the remission of liver fibrosis without inducing hypercalcemia. Overall, our work identifies a promising paradigm for the development of nanomaterial-based agents for liver fibrosis therapy.

PMID:37638336 | PMC:PMC10458662 | DOI:10.1002/mco2.354


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