Development of recombinant protein-based nanoparticle systems for inducing tumor cell apoptosis: In vitro evaluation of their cytotoxic and apoptotic effects on cancer cells

Kaplan Ö., GÖK M. K., PEKMEZ M., Erden Tayhan S., Özgümüş S., Gökçe İ., ...More

Journal of Drug Delivery Science and Technology, vol.95, 2024 (SCI-Expanded) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 95
  • Publication Date: 2024
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.jddst.2024.105565
  • Journal Name: Journal of Drug Delivery Science and Technology
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Biotechnology Research Abstracts
  • Keywords: Cancer, Hybrid polymeric nanoparticles, Mcl-1 inhibition, MS1 peptide, Protein-based nanoparticles, Recombinant protein
  • Istanbul University Affiliated: Yes


Myeloid leukemia cell differentiation protein (Mcl-1) is a B-cell lymphoma 2 (Bcl-2) family antiapoptotic protein that regulates cellular apoptosis. Mcl-1 expression is important for cancer cell survival and a prospective target in cancer treatment. Bcl-2 homology 3 (BH3) mimetic peptides, such as the Mcl-1-specific MS1 peptide that targets conserved BH3 domains, are highly specific Mcl-1 inhibitors. However, the application of these peptides is limited due to their metabolic instability, degradation by cellular proteases, and low cell permeability. In this study, it was aimed to form nanostructures to increase the cellular uptake and stability of the Mcl-1 inhibitor MS1 peptide. The Bim BH3 mimetic MS1 peptide was produced recombinantly in fusion with mNeonGreen fluorescent protein and polyhistidine (6xHisTag). Self-assembled protein nanoparticles were fabricated from the recombinant MS1-mNeonGreen protein. Furthermore, the MS1-mNeonGreen protein was encapsulated into polymeric nanoparticles. The cytotoxic effects of these nanoparticles on cancer cells [cervical cancer cell line (HeLa), lung cancer cell line (A549) and breast cancer cell line (MDA-MB-231)] and healthy cell line [Human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVEC)] was analyzed by MTT test. The apoptotic effect of nanoparticles on these cells was investigated by determining the antiapoptotic and proapoptotic protein levels. As a result, it was revealed that the nanoparticles have a specific cytotoxic effect against the cells and induce apoptosis.