Truncated Hepatitis B virus like nanoparticles: A novel drug delivery platform for cancer therapy

Document Type: Review Paper


Nowadays, Nano-sized drug delivery systems have been studied extensively for their
potential in cancer therapy. Various drug nanocarriers are being developed including liposomes, micelles, and Virus like nanoparticles (VLNPs). VLNPs offer many advantages for developing smart drug delivery systems due to their precise and repeated structures and relatively large cargo capacities. Truncated Hepatitis B core antigen (tHBcAg) self-assembles into VLNPs which have been used widely as a nanocarrier for the development of multi-component vaccines. However, the potential of these VLNPs as a nanocarrier for developing a smart drug delivery system has not been studied for years. tHBcAg VLNPs are easily expressed in bacteria and formed VLNP from multiple copies of the same protein, as a result they are highly uniform. Recent studies have shown the capability of these nanoparticles for conjugation or/and packaging of the anti-cancer drug, and targeting to the cancer cells, suggesting the potentials of the tHBcAg VLNPs as novel promising nanocarriers for targeted and controlled drug delivery systems.