Potent inhibition of MMP-9 by a novel sustained-release platform attenuates left ventricular remodeling following myocardial infarction

Amit Itzhar, Gal Yosef, Maayan Eilon-Ashkenazy, Yulia Shmidov, Hadas Gil, Shiran Lacham-Hartman, Sigal Elyagon, Sharon Etzion, Ronit Bitton, Smadar Cohen, Yoram Etzion, Niv Papo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Sustained drug-release systems prolong the retention of therapeutic drugs within target tissues to alleviate the need for repeated drug administration. Two major caveats of the current systems are that the release rate and the timing cannot be predicted or fine-tuned because they rely on uncontrolled environmental conditions and that the system must be redesigned for each drug and treatment regime because the drug is bound via interactions that are specific to its structure and composition. We present a controlled and universal sustained drug-release system, which comprises minute spherical particles in which a therapeutic protein is affinity-bound to alginate sulfate (AlgS) through one or more short heparin-binding peptide (HBP) sequence repeats. Employing post-myocardial infarction (MI) heart remodeling as a case study, we show that the release of C9—a matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9) inhibitor protein that we easily bound to AlgS by adding one, two, or three HBP repeats to its sequence—can be directly controlled by modifying the number of HBP repeats. In an in vivo study, we directly injected AlgS particles, which were bound to C9 through three HBP repeats, into the left ventricular myocardium of mice following MI. We found that the particles substantially reduced post-MI remodeling, attesting to the sustained, local release of the drug within the tissue. As the number of HBP repeats controls the rate of drug release from the AlgS particles, and since C9 can be easily replaced with almost any protein, our tunable sustained-release system can readily accommodate a wide range of protein-based treatments.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)246-260
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Controlled Release
StatePublished - Dec 2023
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pharmaceutical Science


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