Cytotoxic activity of Crotalus molossus molossus snake venom-loaded in chitosan nanoparticles against T-47D breast carcinoma cells

Jorge Jimenez-Canale, Daniel Fernández-Quiroz, Nayelli G. Teran-Saavedra, Kevin R. Diaz-Galvez, Amed Gallegos-Tabanico, Alexel J. Burgara-Estrella, Hector M. Sarabia-Sainz, Ana M. Guzman-Partida, Maria del Refugio Robles-Burgueño, Luz Vazquez-Moreno, Jose A. Sarabia-Sainz*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Nanomedicine has led to the development of new biocompatible and biodegradable materials able to improve the pharmaceutical effect of bioactive components, broadening the options of treatment for several diseases, including cancer. Additionally, some snake venom toxins have been reported to present cytotoxic activity in different tumor cell lines, making them an auspicious option to be used as cancer drugs. The present study aims to evaluate the cytotoxic activity of the northern blacktailed rattlesnake (Crotalus molossus molossus) venomloaded chitosan nanoparticles (Cs-Venom NPs) against the T-47D breast carcinoma cell line. To do so, we first identified the significant proteins composing the venom; afterward, hemocompatibility and cytotoxic activity against tumoral cells were evaluated. The venom was then loaded into chitosan nanoparticles through the ionotropic gelation process, obtaining particles of 415.9±21.67 nm and ζ-potential of +28.3±1.17 mV. The Cs-Venom complex delivered the venom into the breast carcinoma cells, inhibiting their viability and inducing morphological changes in the T-47D cells. These features indicate that these nanoparticles are suitable for the potential use of C. m. molossus venom toxins entrapped within polymer nanoparticles for the future development and research of cancer drugs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)233-243
Number of pages11
JournalActa Biochimica Polonica
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
✉e-mail: Acknowledgments of Financial Support: Project was partly financially developed by the Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología (CONACyT), Mexico, by scholarship number 494554 #These Authors contributed equally Abbreviations: Cs, chitosan; nanoparticles, NPs; Enhanced Permeability and Retention effect, EPR; sodium tripolyphosphate, TPP; phospholipase A2, PLA2; snake venom metalloproteinase, snake venom serine proteinase, SVSP; L-aminoacid oxidase, LAAO; encapsulation efficiency, EE%; Dynamic Light Scattering, DLS; Atomic Force Microscopy, AFM; Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy, FTIR; fluorescence intensity, FI

Funding Information:
We would like to thank the director of the Museo Itinerante de Vida Animal (MIVIA) from Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico; Gerardo Lorenzo Acosta-Campaña, for the exhaustive and never-ending support with snake venom extractions. We would like to thank Dr. José Án-gel Huerta Ocampo and Dr. Sergio Gerardo Hernández-León for all the technical support and knowledge, as well as the students in the Laboratorio de Física Médica from the University of Sonora for their technical support and advice. We would also like to thank the Con-sejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología (CONACyT) for supporting the scholarship grant to the postgraduate student J.J.-C. (No. 494554). We also thank the Centro de Investigación en Alimentos y Desarrollo, A. C., and Uni-versidad de Sonora for the provided facilities.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022,Acta Biochimica Polonica. All Rights Reserved.


  • Breast cancer treatment
  • Chitosan nanoparticles
  • Drug delivery system
  • Nanomedicine
  • Rattlesnake venom


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