The Treatment of T47D Breast Cancer Cells with Manganese Iron Oxide Magnetic Nanoparticles Coupled with the Chemotherapeutic Agent Doxorubicin

Date of Submission


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Cellular and Molecular Biology


Biology and Environmental Sciences


Saion Sinha, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Eva Sapi, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Christina Zito, Ph.D.


cancer treatment, magnetic nanoparticles, MNPs, doxorubicin, DOX


Breast Neoplasms, Nanoparticles --Therapeutic use


Breast--Cancer, Doxorubicin--Therapeutic use

Call No. at the Univ. of New Haven Library

AS36.N29 Cell & Molec. Bio. 2018 no.2


Cancer is one of the leading causes of death worldwide, however many treatments resort to invasive surgery, radiation and/or chemotherapy treatments that result in indiscriminate cell death to both healthy and cancerous cells. Magnetic nanoparticles (MNPs) are emerging in the field of cancer research as a treatment that can be both targeted and controlled. MNPs can be coated with polymers, functionalizing their surface and allowing for the application of many types of chemotherapeutic agents. In addition, MNPs can be controlled using magnetic fields, ensuring that they are going directly to the cancer site. In this study, MnFe204-MNPs were coated with a primary layer of sodium oleate (NaO) and an outer layer of polyethylene glycol (PEG), then coupled to doxorubicin (DOX). Polymer adsorption was confirmed via attenuated total reflectance IR spectroscopy (AIR) and atomic force microscopy (AFM). The result was the production of a PEG-coated MNP (PEG-MNP) that can be coupled to DOX (DOX-MNP). T47D breast cancer cells were then treated with DOX-MNPs and exposed to a static magnetic field for various lengths of time. Following treatment, cell viability was evaluated. The DOX-MNPs were found to be the most effective treatment when compared to DOX alone, uncoated MNPs (nMNPs) and PEG-MNPs after 90 min magnetic field exposure. These results suggest that the PEG-MNP vehicle is suitable for utilization in drug delivery, as well as the potential for hyperthermia treatments due to their increased efficacy with prolonged magnetic field exposure. The combination of MNP exposure to the magnetic field and chemotherapy is the likely mode by which cell viability decreases after DOX-MNP treatment and magnetic field exposure. While cell viability was demonstrated to decrease in vitro after DOX-MNP treatment, its impact in vivo on surrounding tissues should also be minimized due to the improved ability to control the movement of the drug using magnetic fields.