Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Scientists Explore The Role Nanoparticles May Play In Disease

Date:
April 6, 2008
Source:
American Physiological Society
Summary:
What role do nanoparticles play in hardening of the arteries and in the formation of kidney stones? How may these super-small particles affect the body's physiology? Nanoparticles are a thousand times smaller than the bacteria, E. coli, but recent advances in microscopy have allowed researchers to watch them interact with cells in the body.

Calcified nanobacteria.
Credit: John Lieske, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine

Two Mayo Clinic researchers who study the role nanoparticles may play in hardening of the arteries and in the formation of kidney stones, will lead a symposium on how these super-small particles may affect the body’s physiology. Nanoparticles are a thousand times smaller than the bacteria, E. coli, but recent advances in microscopy have allowed researchers to watch them interact with cells in the body, said Virginia M. Miller and John C. Lieske of the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine. They will lead the symposium, “Using nanotechnology to answer physiological questions.”

One of the questions physiologists want to explore is whether nanoparticles can cause diseases such as atherosclerosis, kidney stones, gall stones and periodontal disease. Dr. Lieske is investigating how nano-sized crystals in the kidney can lead to the development of kidney stones. Dr. Miller has been studying the link between atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) and nanoparticles which calcify within the arteries.

New technology: promise and peril?

Nanotechnology presents intriguing possibilities and some troubling unknowns. The technology is already applied in commercial products as disparate as flame resistant materials and cosmetics. In addition, the technology holds promise in the development of medications that can target precise areas of the body, such as a tumor.

Because of their size, nanoparticles may more easily gain entry to the body, where the longterm effects are unknown. Dr. Miller has found that some nanoparticles cause inflammation when injected into the blood vessels of animals, an early step in the development of atherosclerosis.

Using the latest in microscopy, Dr. Miller has begun to observe nanoparticles from atherosclerotic tissue. She hopes to determine how these particles gain access to cells and whether the interaction eventually leads to cell activation or death leading to calcification.

Kidneys stones start as tiny calcifications which later become larger and eventually develop into kidney stones. Dr. Lieske hypothesizes that the nanoparticle causes the initial calcification. Once that happens, other processes can take place that results in a kidney stone.

It is not yet known where nanoparticles that are implicated in kidney stones and atherosclerosis originate – whether our bodies contain them naturally or we obtain them from the environment.

Miller said research should proceed to determine if nanoparticles are safe over the long term. “We may not know some of the consequences until further down the road” she said.

The symposium will take place April 8 at the Experimental Biology conference in San Diego. Dr. Miller and Dr. Lieske will moderate a program on nanotechnology at Experimental Biology. The speakers are Vitaly Vodyanoy of the University of Auburn; Robert Lee of The Ohio State University; Kevin D. Gillis of the University of Missouri-Columbia and Farooq Shiekh of the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine will present at the symposium.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Physiological Society. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Physiological Society. "Scientists Explore The Role Nanoparticles May Play In Disease." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 April 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080402104151.htm>.
American Physiological Society. (2008, April 6). Scientists Explore The Role Nanoparticles May Play In Disease. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080402104151.htm
American Physiological Society. "Scientists Explore The Role Nanoparticles May Play In Disease." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080402104151.htm (accessed September 1, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Monday, September 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Get on Your Bike! London Cycling Popularity Soars Despite Danger

Get on Your Bike! London Cycling Popularity Soars Despite Danger

AFP (Sep. 1, 2014) Wedged between buses, lorries and cars, cycling in London isn't for the faint hearted. Nevertheless the number of people choosing to bike in the British capital has doubled over the past 15 years. Duration: 02:27 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

Newsy (Aug. 30, 2014) A new study suggests 100 percent of adult humans (those over 18 years of age) have Demodex mites living in their faces. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Liberia Continues Fight Against Ebola

Liberia Continues Fight Against Ebola

AFP (Aug. 30, 2014) Authorities in Liberia try to stem the spread of the Ebola epidemic by raising awareness and setting up sanitation units for people to wash their hands. Duration: 00:41 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
California Passes 'yes-Means-Yes' Campus Sexual Assault Bill

California Passes 'yes-Means-Yes' Campus Sexual Assault Bill

Reuters - US Online Video (Aug. 30, 2014) California lawmakers pass a bill requiring universities to adopt "affirmative consent" language in their definitions of consensual sex, part of a nationwide drive to curb sexual assault on campuses. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins