Systemic miRNA delivery by nontoxic nanoscale coordination polymers limits epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition and suppresses liver metastases of colorectal cancer.


Department of Radiation and Cellular Oncology and the Ludwig Center for Metastasis Research, The University of Chicago, Chicago, IL, 60637, USA. Electronic address: [Email]


Though early detection and treatment of primary tumors has significantly improved in recent years, metastatic disease remains among the most significant challenges in cancer therapy. Cancer cells can disseminate before the primary tumor is detected to form micro or gross metastases, requiring toxic systemic therapies. To prevent and suppress metastases, we have developed a nontoxic, long-circulating nanoscale coordination polymer (NCP) protecting microRNA (miRNA) in circulation and releasing it in tumors. PtIV(en)2 [en = ethylenediamine] containing NCPs (PtEN) can release a nontoxic, kinetically inert PtII(en)2 compound and carbon dioxide which aids the endosomal escape of its miRNA cargo, miR-655-3p. Without the presence of the PtEN core, the miRNA showed cellular uptake but no effect. When transfected into human colorectal HCT116 cells by NCPs, this oligometastatic miRNA limited proliferation and epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition by preventing β-catenin nuclear translocation and tumor cell invasion. Systemic administrations of PtEN/miR-655-3p sustained effective transfection to reduce liver colonization and tumor burden in a xenogenic hepatic metastatic model of HCT116 without any observable toxicity.


Metastasis,Nanoscale coordination polymers,Nanovehicle,Nontoxic,miR-655-3p,miRNA,