Term of Award

Fall 2016

Degree Name

Master of Science in Applied Engineering (M.S.A.E.)

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (restricted to Georgia Southern)

Copyright Statement / License for Reuse

Digital Commons@Georgia Southern License


Department of Mechanical Engineering

Committee Chair

Mujibur Khan

Committee Member 1

Guanghsu Chang

Committee Member 2

Anoop Desai

Committee Member 3

Vinoth Sittaramane

Committee Member 3 Email



Continuous encapsulation of cancer drugs within a biodegradable and bio-compatible polymeric core-shell nanostructures was investigated. Nanostructues capable of sustained release of drugs to specific sites of administration, such as malignant tumor cells. Anti-cancer drug 5-Fluorouracul (FU), Paclitaxel, HET-0016, Cisplatin were encapsulated into biocompatible core-sheath polycaprolactone (PCL) nanofibers (NFs) and nanoparticles using electrospinning, electrospraying, emulsion solvent evaporation technique. A novel method of encapsulating lipophobic anticancer drug within polymeric nanoparticles was also performed combining electrospraying and emulsion solvent evaporation method. Anticancer drug was electrosprayed to generate its nanocrystal and later nanoencapsulation within PCL using emulsion solvent evaporation. Different categories of solvent system and manufacturing parameters were used for all of these manufacturing methods to investigate their effects on morphology, drug release characteristics and cytotoxic effects. Coaxial drug loaded nanofibers were manufactured using high potential electric field of 17-25 kV to draw a compound solution jet from a specialized coaxial spinneret. Emulsion solvent evaporation was performed using sonication and high shear mixing to encapsulate drug within PCL nanoparticles. Morphology of nanostructures were investigated using Scanning Electrosn Microscopy (SEM), Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM) and Electron Dispersive X-ray Spectrometry (EDS). TEM image of FU loaded PCL NF exhibited continuous drug core within PCL sheath. Thinnest NF was paclitaxel encapsulated fibers which was 22-90 nm and smallest nanoparticles was obtained using electrospraying whose diameter was 35-80nm. The maximum encapsulation efficiency was 77.5%. In-vitro drug release kinetics of the NFs were performed in Phosphate buffer saline (PBS) using UV-Vis spectroscopy at 265 nm. NFs with drug particles outsides of surface exhibited rapid initial release (52-53%) in 3 days while other sets of NFs released only 13-23% with in the same time period. In-vitro cell viability test with FU encapsulated NFs (category 2) in human prostatic cancer PC3 cells exhibited 38% alive cells at 5 μM concentration while in pristine FU 43% cells were alive. Paclitaxel encapsulated NFs with breast cancer cells also exhibited increased efficacy in comparison to pristine anticancer drugs and continuous decrease of cell density indicated the slow release of paclitaxel from the NF.

Research Data and Supplementary Material


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