journal article

Multivariate analysis of cellular uptake characteristics for a (co)polymer particle library


Controlling cellular responses to nanoparticles so far is predominantly empirical, typically requiring multiple rounds of optimization of particulate carriers. In this study, a systematic model-assisted approach should lead to the identification of key parameters that account for particle properties and their cellular recognition. A copolymer particle library was synthesized by a combinatorial approach in soap free emulsion copolymerization of styrene and methyl methacrylate, leading to a broad compositional as well as constitutional spectrum. The proposed structure–property relationships could be elucidated by multivariate analysis of the obtained experimental data, including physicochemical characteristics such as molar composition, molecular weight, particle diameter, and particle charge as well as the cellular uptake pattern of nanoparticles. It was found that the main contributors for particle size were the polymers’ molecular weight and the zeta potential, while particle uptake is mainly directed by the particles’ composition. This knowledge and the reported model-assisted procedure to identify relevant parameters affecting particle engulfment of particulate carriers by nonphagocytic and phagocytic cells can be of high relevance for the rational design of pharmaceutical nanocarriers and assessment of biodistribution and nanotoxicity, respectively.
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