Personalized Nanotherapy by Specifically Targeting Cell Organelles To Improve Vascular Hypertension

Document Type


Publication Date



Ciliopathies caused by abnormal function of primary cilia include expanding spectrum of kidney, liver, and cardiovascular disorders. There is currently no treatment available for patients with cilia dysfunction. Therefore, we generated and compared two different (metal and polymer) cilia-targeted nanoparticle drug delivery systems (CTNDDS), CT-DAu-NPs and CT-PLGA-NPs, for the first time. These CTNDDS loaded with fenoldopam were further compared to fenoldopam-alone. Live-imaging of single-cell-single-cilium analysis confirmed that CTNDDS specifically targeted to primary cilia. While CTNDDS did not show any advantages over fenoldopam-alone in cultured cells in vitro, CTNDDS delivered fenoldopam more superior than fenoldopam-alone by eliminating the side effect of reflex tachycardia in murine models. Although slow infusion was required for fenoldopam-alone in mice, bolus injection was possible for CTNDDS. Though there were no significant therapeutic differences between CT-DAu-NPs and CT-PLGA-NPs, CT-PLGA-NPs tended to correct ciliopathy parameters closer to normal physiological levels, indicating CT-PLGA-NPs were better cargos than CT-DAu-NPs. Both CTNDDS showed no systemic adverse effect. In summary, our studies provided scientific evidence that existing pharmacological agent could be personalized with advanced nanomaterials to treat ciliopathy by targeting cilia without the need of generating new drugs.


This article was originally published in Nano Letters, volume 19, issue 2, in 2019.


American Chemical Society