Targeted and sustained delivery of drugs to diseased tissues/organs, where body fluid exchange and catabolic activity are substantial, is challenging due to the fast cleansing and degradation of the drugs by these harsh environmental factors. Herein, a multifunctional and bioadhesive polycaprolactone-β-cyclodextrin (PCL-CD) polymersome is developed for localized and sustained co-delivery of hydrophilic and hydrophobic drug molecules. This PCL-CD polymersome affords multivalent crosslinking action via surface CD-mediated host–guest interactions to generate a supramolecular hydrogel that exhibits evident shear thinning and efficient self-healing behavior. The co-delivery of small molecule and proteinaceous agents by the encapsulated PCL-CD polymersomes enhances the differentiation of stem cells seeded in the hydrogel. Furthermore, the PCL-CD polymersomes are capable of in situ grafting to biological tissues via host–guest complexation between surface CD and native guest groups in the tissue matrix both in vitro and in vivo, thereby effectively extending the retention of loaded cargo in the grafted tissue. It is further demonstrated that the co-delivery of small molecule and proteinaceous drugs via PCL-CD polymersomes averts cartilage degeneration in animal osteoarthritic (OA) knee joints, which are known for their biochemically harsh and fluidically dynamic environment.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Materials Science(all)