Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Twin Nanoparticle Shown Effective At Targeting, Killing Breast Cancer Cells

Date:
March 14, 2009
Source:
Brown University
Summary:
Chemists have developed a novel way to treat a class of breast cancer cells. They have created a twin nanoparticle that specifically targets the Her-2 tumor cell and unloads a cancer-fighting drug directly into it. The result: Greater success at eliminating the cancer while minimizing an anti-cancer drug's side effects.

A unique, dumbbell-shaped twin nanoparticle created by Brown University chemists targets a class of breast cancer cells known as Her-2 tumor cells.
Credit: Chenjie Xu, Shouheng Sun/Brown University

Breast cancer patients face many horrors, including those that arise when fighting the cancer itself. Medications given during chemotherapy can have wicked side effects, including vomiting, dizziness, anemia and hair loss. These side effects occur because medications released into the body target healthy cells as well as tumor cells.

Related Articles


The trick becomes how to deliver cancer-fighting drugs directly to the tumor cells. Brown University chemists think they have an answer: They have created a twin nanoparticle that specifically targets the Her-2-positive tumor cell, a type of malignant cell that affects up to 30 percent of breast cancer patients.

The combination nanoparticle binds to the Her-2 tumor cell and unloads the cancer-fighting drug cisplatin directly into the infected cell. The result: Greater success at killing the cancer while minimizing the anti-cancer drug's side effects.

"Like a missile, you don't want the anti-cancer drugs to explode everywhere," explained Shouheng Sun, a chemistry professor at Brown University and an author on the paper published online in The Journal of the American Chemical Society. "You want it to target the tumor cells and not the healthy ones."

The researchers created the twin nanoparticle by binding one gold (Au) nanoparticle with an iron-oxide (Fe3O4) nanoparticle. On one end, they attached a synthetic protein antibody to the iron-oxide nanoparticle. On the other end, they attached cisplatin to the gold nanoparticle. Visually, the whole contraption looks like an elongated dumbbell, but it may be better to think of it as a vehicle, equipped with a very good GPS system, that is ferrying a very important passenger.

In this case, the GPS comes from the iron-oxide nanoparticle, which homes in on a Her-2 breast-cancer cell like a guided missile. The attached antibody is critical, because it binds to the antigen, a protein located on the surface on the malignant cell. Put another way, the nanoparticle vehicle "docks" on the tumor cell when the antibody and the antigen become connected. Once docked, the vehicle unloads its "passenger," the cisplatin, into the malignant cell.

"It's like a magic bullet," said Chenjie Xu, a Brown graduate student and the lead author on the paper. Baodui Wang, a visiting scientist at Brown and now an associate professor at Lanzhou University in China, contributed to the paper.

In a neat twist, the Brown-led team used a pH-sensitive covalent bond to connect the gold nanoparticle with the cisplatin to ensure that the drug was not released into the body but remained attached to the nanoparticle until it was time for it to be released into the malignant cell.

In laboratory tests, the gold-iron oxide nanoparticle combination successfully targeted the cancer cells and released the anti-cancer drugs into the malignant cells, killing the cells in up to 80 percent of cases. "We made a Mercedes Benz now," Sun joked. "It's not a Honda Civic anymore."

The research builds on previous work in Sun's lab where researchers created peptide-coated iron-oxide nanoparticles that, in tests with mice, successfully located a brain tumor cell called U87MG.

The researchers will test the breast-cancer nanoparticle system in laboratory tests with animals. They also plan to create twin nanoparticles that can release the drug via remote-controlled magnetic heating.

The breast-cancer nanoparticle research was funded by the National Institutes of Health.


Story Source:

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


Cite This Page:

Brown University. "Twin Nanoparticle Shown Effective At Targeting, Killing Breast Cancer Cells." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 March 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090310120353.htm>.
Brown University. (2009, March 14). Twin Nanoparticle Shown Effective At Targeting, Killing Breast Cancer Cells. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 27, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090310120353.htm
Brown University. "Twin Nanoparticle Shown Effective At Targeting, Killing Breast Cancer Cells." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090310120353.htm (accessed March 27, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, March 27, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

House Ready to Pass Medicare Doc Bill

House Ready to Pass Medicare Doc Bill

AP (Mar. 26, 2015) In rare bipartisan harmony, congressional leaders pushed a $214 billion bill permanently blocking physician Medicare cuts toward House passage Thursday, moving lawmakers closer to resolving a problem that has plagued them for years. (March 26) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
HIV Outbreak Prompts Public Health Emergency In Indiana

HIV Outbreak Prompts Public Health Emergency In Indiana

Newsy (Mar. 26, 2015) Indiana Gov. Mike Pence says he will bring additional state resources to help stop the epidemic. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Indiana Permits Needle Exchange as HIV Cases Skyrocket

Indiana Permits Needle Exchange as HIV Cases Skyrocket

Reuters - US Online Video (Mar. 26, 2015) Governor Mike Pence declares the recent HIV outbreak in rural Indiana a "public health emergency" and authorizes a short-term needle-exchange program. Rough Cut (no reporter narration) Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
AAA: Distracted Driving a Serious Teen Problem

AAA: Distracted Driving a Serious Teen Problem

AP (Mar. 25, 2015) While distracted driving is not a new problem for teens, new research from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety says it&apos;s much more serious than previously thought. (March 25) Video provided by AP
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:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

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