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Development and characterization of lactoferrin nanoliposome: cellular uptake and stability

Rongfa Guan1*, Jieqing Ma1, Yihang Wu1*, Fei Lu2, Chaogeng Xiao3, Han Jiang1 and Tianshu Kang1

Author Affiliations

1 Zhejiang Provincial Engineering Laboratory of Quality Controlling Technology and Instrumentation for Marine Food, China Jiliang University, Hangzhou 310018, People’s Republic of China

2 Zhejiang University of Technology, Hangzhou 310014, People’s Republic of China

3 Food Science Institute, Zhejiang Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Hangzhou 310021, People’s Republic of China

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Nanoscale Research Letters 2012, 7:679  doi:10.1186/1556-276X-7-679

Published: 17 December 2012


Lactoferrin was purported in consumer literature to enhance and support the immune system response through their antioxidant, antibacterial, and anticarcinogenic properties. To improve the effectiveness of lactoferrin, liposomes were used as a carrier in this study. The main purpose of this study was to compare three different methods to prepare the lactoferrin nanoliposomes based on the encapsulation efficiency and size distribution and evaluate the stability and cellular uptake of lactoferrin nanoliposomes. Encapsulation efficiency and size distribution indicated the reverse-phase evaporation method was fit for preparing the lactoferrin nanoliposomes. The stabilities of lactoferrin nanoliposomes in simulated gastrointestinal juice, sonication treatment time and lipoperoxidation extent of storage time were evaluated. The lactoferrin nanoliposomes showed an acceptable stability in simulated gastrointestinal juice at 37°C for 4 h and short treatment times were required to achieve nano-scaled liposomes. Furthermore, the viability of cells was decreased by increasing the concentration of the various lactoferrin nanoliposomes. The methyl thiazolyl tetrazolium results demonstrated that Lf nanoliposomes and Lf activated in the cells in a manner of dose-effect relation and Lf nanoliposomes had a statistically significantly different (p<0.01) between the concentration 5 and 10 mg/mL. According to the results, nanoliposomes may be fit for the oral administration of lactoferrin and could be useful approach for lactoferrin availability in tumor cells.

Lactoferrin; Nanoliposome; Cellular uptake; Stability