Design and characterization of Squalene-Gusperimus nanoparticles for modulation of innate immunity

Carlos E Navarro Chica*, Bart J de Haan, M M Faas, Alexandra M Smink, Ligia Sierra, Paul de Vos, Betty L López

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)
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Immunosuppressive drugs are widely used for the treatment of autoimmune diseases and to prevent rejection in organ transplantation. Gusperimus is a relatively safe immunosuppressive drug with low cytotoxicity and reversible side effects. It is highly hydrophilic and unstable. Therefore, it requires administration in high doses which increases its side effects. To overcome this, here we encapsulated gusperimus as squalene-gusperimus nanoparticles (Sq-GusNPs). These nanoparticles (NPs) were obtained from nanoassembly of the squalene gusperimus (Sq-Gus) bioconjugate in water, which was synthesized starting from squalene. The size, charge, and dispersity of the Sq-GusNPs were optimized using the response surface methodology (RSM). The colloidal stability of the Sq-GusNPs was tested using an experimental block design at different storage temperatures after preparing them at different pH conditions. Sq-GusNPs showed to be colloidally stable, non-cytotoxic, readily taken up by cells, and with an anti-inflammatory effect sustained over time. We demonstrate that gusperimus was stabilized through its conjugation with squalene and subsequent formation of NPs allowing its controlled release. Overall, the Sq-GusNPs have the potential to be used as an alternative in approaches for the treatment of different pathologies where a controlled release of gusperimus could be required.

Original languageEnglish
Article number119893
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Pharmaceutics
Early online date19-Sept-2020
Publication statusPublished - 30-Nov-2020


  • Squalene-Gusperimus nanoparticles
  • In vitro evaluation
  • (RSM) response surface methodology
  • Block design
  • Immunosuppressant
  • CELL
  • NMR

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