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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle

Preparation of Well-Dispersed Chitosan/Alginate Hollow Multilayered Microcapsules for Enhanced Cellular Internalization

1
Department of Chemistry, CICECO—Aveiro Institute of Materials, University of Aveiro, Campus Universitário de Santiago, 3810-193 Aveiro, Portugal
2
Department of Chemistry and CQ-VR, University of Trás-os-Montes e Alto Douro, 5001-801 Vila Real, Portugal
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Molecules 2018, 23(3), 625; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23030625
Received: 23 February 2018 / Revised: 8 March 2018 / Accepted: 8 March 2018 / Published: 10 March 2018
Hollow multilayered capsules have shown massive potential for being used in the biomedical and biotechnology fields, in applications such as cellular internalization, intracellular trafficking, drug delivery, or tissue engineering. In particular, hollow microcapsules, developed by resorting to porous calcium carbonate sacrificial templates, natural-origin building blocks and the prominent Layer-by-Layer (LbL) technology, have attracted increasing attention owing to their key features. However, these microcapsules revealed a great tendency to aggregate, which represents a major hurdle when aiming for cellular internalization and intracellular therapeutics delivery. Herein, we report the preparation of well-dispersed polysaccharide-based hollow multilayered microcapsules by combining the LbL technique with an optimized purification process. Cationic chitosan (CHT) and anionic alginate (ALG) were chosen as the marine origin polysaccharides due to their biocompatibility and structural similarity to the extracellular matrices of living tissues. Moreover, the inexpensive and highly versatile LbL technology was used to fabricate core-shell microparticles and hollow multilayered microcapsules, with precise control over their composition and physicochemical properties, by repeating the alternate deposition of both materials. The microcapsules’ synthesis procedure was optimized to extensively reduce their natural aggregation tendency, as shown by the morphological analysis monitored by advanced microscopy techniques. The well-dispersed microcapsules showed an enhanced uptake by fibroblasts, opening new perspectives for cellular internalization. View Full-Text
Keywords: chitosan; alginate; marine origin polysaccharides; biocompatible polymers; CaCO3 porous microparticles; layer-by-layer assembly; hollow multilayered microcapsules; non-aggregated microcapsules; cellular internalization chitosan; alginate; marine origin polysaccharides; biocompatible polymers; CaCO3 porous microparticles; layer-by-layer assembly; hollow multilayered microcapsules; non-aggregated microcapsules; cellular internalization
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MDPI and ACS Style

Ribeiro, C.; Borges, J.; Costa, A.M.S.; Gaspar, V.M.; Bermudez, V.D.Z.; Mano, J.F. Preparation of Well-Dispersed Chitosan/Alginate Hollow Multilayered Microcapsules for Enhanced Cellular Internalization. Molecules 2018, 23, 625.

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