Ultrasound-Enhanced Delivery of an Aptamer-Doxorubicin Conjugate to Breast Cancer Cells

Ju Yao Chang, Tsai Kai Ju, Nelson G. Chen*, Chun Jen Hsiao, Chin Yu Wang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


When treating cancer with chemotherapy, serious side effects are caused by the inability of the drug to be solely delivered to the tumor. As a result, a portion of the drug agents is inevitably delivered elsewhere and destroy normal cells. We report the first results on combining ultrasound with an aptamer-doxorubicin conjugate to treat cancer cells. Enhancement of therapeutic effects combined with a reduction in side effects indicates the potential of this approach. Although many studies have noted that ultrasound can enhance drug delivery, ultrasound has not addressed the goal of reducing side effects. To both reduce side effects and enhance the efficiency of killing cancer cells, this study mainly uses a specially targeted aptamer conjugated to the anticancer drug doxorubicin (DOX), which was applied in combination with ultrasound for cancer treatment. We also compared the results between cancer and normal cell lines to explore the targeting effect of the aptamer. Both breast cancer cells (MCF-7) and breast cells (MCF-10A) were used for the experiments. The results show that the aptamer conjugated to an anticancer drug can be used to target cancer cells and ultrasound can enhance drug delivery. This method can significantly reduce the side effects of the anticancer drug and achieve favorable therapeutic effects.

Original languageEnglish
Article number8763946
Pages (from-to)94189-94194
Number of pages6
JournalIEEE Access
StatePublished - 2019


  • Aptamer
  • cancer
  • drug delivery
  • ultrasound

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