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A drug delivery system with red fluorescence for the delivery and release of 5-fluorouracil in vitro

Xingxing Qiu, Siyu Yin, Chao Li, Yajiao Zhang, Yongxiu Li, and Yufeng Chen

College of Chemistry, Nanchang University, Nanchang, China



Received: 10 September 2021  Accepted: 15 December 2021


A drug delivery system with red fluorescence, based on Eu3+-doped ZnAl-LDH, is used for the delivery and release of the 5-fluorouracil (5-Fu) which is an anticancer drug. The release of 5-Fu was carried out in simulated intestinal medium (phosphate buffer solutions with pH 7.4 and 37 °C). The release of 5-Fu shows an initial rapid release with the average rate of 4.48 × 10−4 g·L−1/min and 70.33% release within the first 240 min, followed by a slow release with the average rate of 9.79 × 10−5 g·L−1/min and 29.67% release between 240 and 720 min. The loading capacity of the Eu3+-doped ZnAl-LDH for the 5-Fu was estimated to be about 35.0% (namely 35.0 g of 5-Fu per 100 g Eu3+-doped LDH). Interestingly, the loading of 5-Fu into the Eu3+-doped ZnAl-LDH attenuated the red fluorescence of the Eu3+-doped ZnAl-LDH, and its fluorescence was recovered after the 5-Fu released. This red fluorescent change may be used for in situ probing of the delivery and release of 5-Fu at specific sites.

Keywords: 5-fluorouracil; Eu3+-doped ZnAl-LDH; Drug delivery system; Fluorescent labeling

Full paper is available at

DOI: 10.1007/s11696-021-02028-5


Chemical Papers 76 (4) 2221–2234 (2022)

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