The FDA-approved platinum-based drugs (cisplatin, carboplatin, and oxaliplatin) are widely used in the clinical treatment of cancer. Cisplatin and carboplatin are extensively employed for the treatment of testicular, ovarian, lung, head, and neck cancers, whereas oxaliplatin is used for the treatment of colorectal cancer. However, these platinum compounds have multiple drawbacks, including lack of selectivity, dosage limited by toxic side effects, low bioavailability, large costs, and short retention time. As such the development of new delivery methods of these medications is a growing field as with more precise delivery of these drugs will solve the issues of dosage, retention time, and will most likely result in a decrease in cost of treatment due to the increased selectivity. A Pt6L4 cage may be a new possible delivery platform for these drugs. The cage is a 3-nm nanocluster, which has shown promising results in vitro for the delivery of a platinum(IV) prodrug of cisplatin into cells through formation of a well-defined host-guest system.1 The cage also showed promising results in overcoming the platinum resistance of cancer cells. The cage was synthesized using a platinum center and triazine ligands. During the Fall Semester of 2015, I have successfully synthesized the Pt6L4 cage in the lab using microwave synthesis as opposed to conventional heating. This new method resulted in higher yields of the final product, which was confirmed by NMR spectroscopy. Future works aim to develop a traceable delivery system for transportation of cisplatin. This will be achieved via the attachment of MRI and fluorescence components that will allow the tracking of the platinum pro-drugs in vitro and in vivo.2
Dr. Yaorong Zheng
A Pt6L4 cage was tested in the delivery of cisplatin, a drug involved in the treatment of several cancers, in cancerous hela cells in vitro. The cage showed promising results in overcoming cancer cells resistance to the platinum drug.