Synthesis and Characterization of Dextran Coated Mn/Zn-Ferrite Nanoparticles for Cancer Treatment

Angel D. Cortes, Chemical Engineering, University of Puerto Rico - Mayaguez, Mayaguez, PR 00681, Magda Latorre, University of Puerto Rico Mayguez Campus, Mayaguez, PR 00680, and Carlos Rinaldi, Chemical Engineering, University of Puerto Rico, PO Box 9046, Mayaguez, PR 00681.

Previous studies have shown that magnetic nanoparticles possess great potential for several in vivo applications such as cancer treatment agents, which require that the particles be colloidally stable in biological media. The goal of this study was to obtain a magnetic fluid produced by the colloidal suspension of manganese/zinc ferrite (MZF) nanoparticles that could be stably dispersed throughout the range of physiological pH and ionic strength. These superparamagnetic nanoparticles were stabilized by coating with carboxymethyl dextran (CMD) to provide steric repulsion between the particles along with enhanced biocompatibility. Samples of the resultant magnetic fluid were analyzed using Inductively Coupled Plasma Optical Emission Spectrometry (ICP-OES), Zeta Potential measurements, Dynamic Light Scattering (DLS), X-Ray Diffraction (XRD), Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM), and SQUID magnetometry. Results showed that the obtained metal oxide nanoparticles held a composition of Mn0.24Zn0.76Fe2O4 and a range of mean hydrodynamic diameter of the CMD-coated nanoparticles between 30 and 50 nm at neutral pH, demonstrating low particle agglomeration. Cell viability measurements showed the material is non-toxic to MCF-7 and CaCo-2 cell lines at concentrations of up to 7.5 mg/mL of particle fraction for contact times of up to 48 hours.