Document Type


Publication Date



A cyclic peptide containing one cysteine and five alternating tryptophan and arginine amino acids [(WR)5C] was synthesized using Fmoc/tBu solid-phase methodology. The ability of the synthesized cyclic peptide to produce gadolinium nanoparticles through an in situ one-pot mixing of an aqueous solution of GdCl3 with [(WR)5C] peptide solution was evaluated. Transmission electron microscopy showed the formed peptide-Gd nanoparticles in star-shape morphology with a size of ~250 nm. Flow cytometry investigation showed that the cellular uptake of a cell-impermeable fluorescence-labeled phosphopeptide (F′-GpYEEI, where F′ = fluorescein) was approximately six times higher in the presence of [(WR)5C]-Gd nanoparticles than those of F′-GpYEEI alone in human leukemia adenocarcinoma (CCRF-CEM) cells after 2 h incubation. The antiproliferative activities of cisplatin and carboplatin (5 µM) were increased in the presence of [(WR)5C]-GdNPs (50 μM) by 41% and 18%, respectively, after 72-h incubation in CCRF-CEM cells. The intracellular release of epirubicin, an anticancer drug, from the complex showed that 15% and 60% of the drug was released intracellularly within 12 and 48 h, respectively. This report provides insight about using a non-toxic MRI agent, gadolinium nanoparticles, for the delivery of various types of molecular cargos.


This article was originally published in Pharmaceutics, volume 12, issue 9, in 2020.


The authors

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.