Light-induced release of the cardioprotective peptide angiotensin-(1–9) from thermosensitive liposomes with gold nanoclusters

Julian Bejarano, Aldo Rojas, Andrea Ramírez-Sagredo, Ana L. Riveros, Francisco Morales-Zavala, Yvo Flores, Jaime A. Riquelme, Fanny Guzman, Eyleen Araya, Mario Chiong, María Paz Ocaranza, Javier O. Morales, María Gabriela Villamizar Sarmiento, Gina Sanchez, Sergio Lavandero, Marcelo J. Kogan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Angiotensin-(1-9), a component of the non-canonical renin-angiotensin system, has a short half-life in blood. This peptide has shown to prevent and/or attenuate hypertension and cardiovascular remodeling. A controlled release of angiotensin-(1-9) is needed for its delivery to the heart. Our aim was to develop a drug delivery system for angiotensin-(1-9). Thermosensitive liposomes (LipoTherm) were prepared with gold nanoclusters (LipoTherm-AuNC) to increase the stability and reach a temporal and spatial control of angiotensin-(1-9) release. Encapsulation efficiencies of nearly 50% were achieved in LipoTherm, reaching a total angiotensin-(1-9) loading of around 180 μM. This angiotensin-(1–9)-loaded LipoTherm sized around 100 nm and exhibited a phase transition temperature of 43 °C. AuNC were grown on LipoTherm and the new hybrid nanosystem showed energy absorption in the near-infrared (NIR) wavelength range. By NIR laser irradiation, a controlled release of angiotensin-(1-9) was achieved from the LipoTherm-AuNC nanosystem. These nanosystems did not show any cytotoxic effect on cultured cardiomyocytes. Biological activity of angiotensin-(1-9) released from the LipoTherm-AuNC-based nanosystem was confirmed using an ex vivo Langendorff heart model.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)859-872
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Controlled Release
Publication statusPublished - 10 Dec 2020


  • Angiotensin-(1-9)
  • Cardioprotection
  • Cardiovascular diseases
  • Nanoparticles
  • Thermosensitive liposomes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmaceutical Science


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