Mechanisms of internalization of maltose-modified poly(propylene imine) glycodendrimers into leukemic cell lines.

Poly(propylene imine) dendrimers of 4th generation partially modified with maltose (open shell structure, PPI-m OS) have been proposed as carriers for nucleotide anticancer drugs. The aim of this work was to provide basic insight into interactions between fluorescently labeled PPI-m dendrimer and two distinct leukemia cell models: CCRF-1301 lymphoid cell line and HL-60 myeloid cell line. We applied qualitative confocal imaging and quantitative flow cytometry, as well as trypan blue quenching and pharmacological inhibition, to investigate the course, kinetics and molecular mechanisms of internalization of nanoparticles. CCRF-1301 cells take up glycodendrimer macromolecules via a relatively slow, adsorptive endocytosis process which is cholesterol-dependent, clathrin- and caveolin-independent and is not followed by recycling or exocytosis. Morphological features of this phenomenon point to the involvement of aggregation-induced cell polarity changes (capping). In HL-60 cells, internalization is very fast, independent of binding to the cell surface and proceeds from the fluid phase via a classical clathrin-dependent mechanism, ending up in an endolysosomal compartment from which it is not further released. This substantial difference in internalization rate and mechanism between two cell types has important repercussions for potential application of this class of glycodendrimers as drug delivery agents.

Biomacromolecules. 2017 Apr 17 [Epub ahead of print]

Maciej Studzian, Aleksandra Szulc, Anna Janaszewska, Dietmar Appelhans, Łukasz Pułaski, Barbara Klajnert-Maculewicz