Plasmonic photothermal therapy increases the tumor mass penetration of HPMA copolymers

Adam J. Gormley, Nate Larson, Afsheen Banisadr, Ryan Robinson, Nick Frazier, Abhijit Ray, Hamidreza Ghandehari

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Effective drug delivery to tumors requires both transport through the vasculature and tumor interstitium. Previously, it was shown that gold nanorod (GNR) mediated plasmonic photothermal therapy (PPTT) is capable of increasing the overall accumulation of N-(2-hydroxypropyl)methacrylamide (HPMA) copolymers in prostate tumors. In the present study, it is demonstrated that PPTT is also capable of increasing the distribution of these conjugates in tumors. Gadolinium labeled HPMA copolymers were administered to mice bearing prostate tumors immediately before treatment of the right tumor with PPTT. The left tumor served as internal, untreated control. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of both tumors showed that PPTT was capable of improving the tumor mass penetration of HPMA copolymers. Thermal enhancement of delivery, roughly 1.5-fold, to both the tumor center and periphery was observed. Confocal microscopy of fluorescently labeled copolymers corroborates these findings in that PPTT is capable of delivering more HPMA copolymers to the tumor's center and periphery. These results further demonstrate that PPTT is a useful tool to improve the delivery of polymer-drug conjugates.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)130-138
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Controlled Release
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 10 2013
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pharmaceutical Science


  • Drug delivery
  • Gold nanorods
  • HPMA copolymers
  • Hyperthermia
  • MRI
  • Photothermal therapy

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