Nanoparticles (NPs) coated with hyaluronic acid (HA) seem to be increasingly promising for targeted therapy due to HA chemical versatility, which allows them to bind drugs of different natures, and their affinity with the transmembrane receptor CD-44, overexpressed in tumor cells. However, an essential aspect for clinical use of NPs is formulation stability over time. For these reasons, analytical techniques capable of characterizing their physico-chemical properties are needed. In this work, poly(lactide-co-glycolide) (PLGA) NPs with an average diameter of 100-150 nm, coated with a few 10 s of nm of HA, were synthesized. For stability characterization, two complementary investigative techniques were used: Dynamic Light Scattering (DLS) and Surface-Enhanced Raman Scattering (SERS) spectroscopy. The first technique provided information on size, polidispersity index, and zeta-potential, and the second provided a deeper insight on the NP surface chemicals, allowing distinguishing of HA-coated NPs from uncoated ones. Furthermore, in order to estimate formulation stability over time, NPs were measured and monitored for two weeks. SERS results showed a progressive decrease in the signal associated with HA, which, however, is not detectable by the DLS measurements.
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