Combining chemotherapy and immunotherapy has been considered as an attractive approach to improve cancer therapy. Here we prepared folated PVA-based nanogels for the simultaneous delivery of docetaxel (DTX) and the indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase 1 (IDO1) inhibitor NLG919 (N9) for enhancing cancer chemo-immunotherapy. FDA-approved poly(vinyl alcohol) (PVA) with good biocompatibility was modified with vinyl ether acrylate (VEA) groups for UV-crosslinking and acidic degradation. Carboxyl groups were introduced via modification with succinic anhydride for improved drug loading and folic acid (FA) ligands were incorporated for tumor targeting. UV-crosslinked folated PVA nanogels were efficiently taken up by tumor cells followed by endo/lysosomal pH-triggered intracellular drug release, which induced significant cytotoxicity towards 4T1 breast cancer cells in vitro. DTX and N9 co-loaded PVA nanogels exhibited a much higher antitumor efficiency in 4T1 mouse breast cancer models in vivo as compared to the free drug controls. The drug-laden nanogels not only directly killed the tumor cells by DTX, but also induced immunogenic cell death (ICD) promoting intratumoral accumulation of cytotoxic T lymphocytes, and further combining with N9 elevated the intratumoral infiltration of CD8+ T cells and NK cells and inhibited the infiltration of MDSCs, downregulating IDO1-mediated immunosuppression.
- n/a OA procedure