Folate PEG, also known as folate-conjugated polyethylene glycol, is a type of PEGylated molecule that is used in targeted drug delivery. Folate PEG is created by attaching folate, a vitamin that is necessary for DNA synthesis, to a polyethylene glycol chain. The resulting molecule is then used to target cancer cells that overexpress the folate receptor.
The folate receptor is expressed at higher levels in certain types of cancer cells, such as ovarian, lung, and breast cancers. By attaching folate to the PEG chain, the resulting molecule can specifically bind to the folate receptor on cancer cells, allowing for targeted drug delivery to cancer cells while minimizing toxicity to healthy cells.
Folate PEG is commonly used in the development of chemotherapy drugs. Chemotherapy drugs are often associated with significant side effects due to their non-specific nature, which can cause damage to healthy cells in addition to cancer cells. By using folate PEG to target cancer cells specifically, chemotherapy drugs can be delivered directly to cancer cells, reducing the overall dose required and minimizing side effects.
In summary, folate PEG is a valuable tool in targeted drug delivery, particularly in the development of chemotherapy drugs. Its ability to specifically target cancer cells that overexpress the folate receptor allows for the delivery of drugs directly to cancer cells, minimizing toxicity to healthy cells and reducing the overall dose required.