Surfactant free preparation of biodegradable dendritic polyglycerol nanogels by inverse nanoprecipiation for encapsulation and release of pharmaceutical enzymes
D. Steinhilber, M. Witting, X. Zhang, M. Steagemann, W. Friess, S. Küchler, R. Haag – 2013
In this paper we report a novel approach to generate biodegradable polyglycerol nanogels on different length scales. We developed a mild, surfactant free inverse nanoprecipitation process to template hydrophilic polyglycerol nanoparticles. In situ crosslinking of the precipitated nanoparticles by bioorthogonal copper catalyzed click chemistry allows us to obtain size defined polyglycerol nanogels (100–1000nm). Biodegradability was achieved by the introduction of benzacetal bonds into the net points of the nanogel. Interestingly, the polyglycerol nanogels quickly degraded into low molecular weight fragments at acidic pH values, which are present in inflamed and tumor tissues as well as intracellular organelles, and they remained stable at physiological pH values for a long time. This mild approach to biodegradable polyglycerol nanogels allows us to encapsulate labile biomacromolecules such as proteins, including the therapeutic relevant enzyme asparaginase, into the protein resistant polyglycerol network. Enzymes were encapsulated with an efficacy of 100% and after drug release, full enzyme activity and structural integrity were retained. This new inverse nanoprecipitation procedure allows the efficient encapsulation and release of various biomacromolecules including proteins and could find many applications in polymer therapeutics and nanomedicine.