Background: The aim of this study was to develop and compare polymeric micelles of fucoidan, a
sulfated polysaccharide, and hydrophobic drugs such as paclitaxel and curcumin. Paclitaxel and curcumin are
both known for their medicinal properties, including anticancer efficacy. However, their very low water solubility,
absorption and rapid metabolism leads to reduced bioavailability. To redress these problems and enhance
anti-cancer therapeutics using fucoidan, polymeric micelles were synthesized from conjugates of fucoidan and
Methods: The chemical conjugation of fucoidan and hydrophobic drugs has been achieved by utilizing reactive
functional groups on the molecules, such as carboxylic groups and hydroxyl groups.
Results: The micelles revealed a homogeneous spherical morphology, size, negative surface charge. Fourier
transform infrared spectroscopy was used to investigate the physicochemical properties of the polymeric micelles,
which form a self-assembled polymeric micelle in aqueous medium. The results of the in vitro release of
curcumin and fucoidan showed that their release rates were higher at a pH of 4.5 than at a pH of 7.4. In contrast,
the paclitaxel conjugate had a similar release profile at pH of 4.5 and pH of 7.4.
Conclusion: In the present work, we also found an effective drug delivery system that had the ability to release
two types of anticancer drugs, fucoidan and hydrophobic drugs, in the tumour environment.