Preparation of size tunable, glutathione-responsive hyaluronic acid-quantum dot nanohybrids using microemulsion method

Moran Guo, Wing Cheung Law, Chi Ho Ng, Hongxin Cai, Liwei Liu, Lihui Zhao, Xihe Zhang

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


� 2015 by American Scientific Publishers. In this paper, a new method for preparing hyaluronic acid-quantum dot (HA-QD) nanohybrids, which are highly monodispersed, colloidally stable, glutathione (GSH)-responsive and size tunable from 80-500 nm, is reported. Due to the fact that HA is a naturally exist polymer and many types of cancer cells are overexpressed with HA receptors on their surfaces, HA has become one of the promising materials to prepare nanocarriers for theranostics applications. Our design is based on the disulfide chemical structure of cystamine dihydrochloride which has been served as the crosslinker. HA-QDs were synthesized in the nano-cavities created by the microemulsion system. The prepared HA-QDs are GSH-responsive. In the presence of GSH, the disulfide bonds can be cleaved and it leads to the degradation of HA-QDs into smaller fragments. Our in vitro studies show that the HA-QDs are highly specific to the pancreatic and cervix cancer cells and no toxicity was detected in the cell proliferation (MTS) assays, revealing the great potentials to use HA-based nanohybrids for cancer imaging and therapy.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)364-370
Number of pages7
JournalScience of Advanced Materials
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2015


  • Degradable
  • Glutathione-responsive
  • Hyaluronic acid
  • Microemulsion
  • Quantum dots

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)

Cite this