Background: Icaritin can inhibit cell proliferation and induce apoptosis in Oral Squamous Cell Carcinoma (OSCC). However, low solubility limits its clinical usage.
Objectives: To improve the efficacy of icaritin treatment, a micelle system was designed for targeted delivery of drugs to OSCC cells.
Methods: In the present study, the micelles loaded with icaritin were self-assembled from the amphipathic polymer via film dispersion. Nanoparticles were characterized with the transmission electron microscope and dynamic light scattering. The cytotoxicity of icaritin nanoparticles was analyzed by CCK-8, and in vitro target-selective intracellular uptake behaviors were observed using a laser confocal microscope.
Results: The micelles were spherical with the mean diameter of 121.2 nm. In vitro studies revealed that icaritin was stablely and slowly released from micelles. Cytotoxicity analysis demonstrated that icartin-loaded micelles exhibited better therapeu-tic efficacy compared with free icaritin. Cellular uptake and intracellular release results revealed that micelles efficiently de-livered icaritin into OSCC cells.
Conclusion: These results suggest that encapsulated icaritin in polycaprolactone - polyethylene glycol (PCL-PEG) micelles may provide safe and effective drug delivery in OSCC treatments.