Further specific target-ability development of biodegradable nanocarriers is extremely important to promote their security and efficiency in antitumor drug-delivery applications. In this study, a facilely prepared poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA)-polyethylene glycol (PEG)-folic acid (FA) copolymer was able to self-assemble into nanoparticles with favorable hydrodynamic diameters of around 100 nm and negative surface charge in aqueous solution, which was expected to enhance intracellular antitumor drug delivery by advanced dual tumor-target effects, ie, enhanced permeability and retention induced the passive target, and FA mediated the positive target. Fluorescence-activated cell-sorting and confocal laser-scanning microscopy results confirmed that doxorubicin (model drug) loaded into PLGA-PEG-FA nanoparticles was able to be delivered efficiently into tumor cells and accumulated at nuclei. In addition, all hemolysis, 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-5-(3-carboxymethoxyphenyl)-2-(4-sulfophenyl)-2H-tetrazolium, and zebrafish-development experiments demonstrated that PLGA-PEG-FA nanoparticles were biocompatible and secure for biomedical applications, even at high polymer concentration (0.1 mg/mL), both in vitro and in vivo. Therefore, PLGA-PEG-FA nanoparticles provide a feasible controlled-release platform for secure and efficient antitumor drug delivery.