Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Silver bullet to beat cancer?

Date:
February 2, 2012
Source:
University of Leeds
Summary:
The Internet is awash with stories of how silver can be used to treat cancer. Now, lab tests have shown that it is as effective as the leading chemotherapy drug -- and may have fewer side-effects. Results from a new study show that particular silver compounds are as toxic to cancer cells as the platinum-based drug Cisplatin, which is widely used to treat a range of cancers.

The Internet is awash with stories of how silver can be used to treat cancer. Now, lab tests have shown that it is as effective as the leading chemotherapy drug -- and may have fewer side-effects. Results from the study at the University of Leeds, published in Dalton Transactions, show that particular silver compounds are as toxic to cancer cells as the platinum-based drug Cisplatin, which is widely used to treat a range of cancers.

But the crucial difference is that silver is thought to be much less toxic to healthy human cells, and in some cases, can be beneficial. Silver is currently used for its antiseptic and antibiotic properties, in bandages, wound dressings and water purification filters in the third world.

Nausea and vomiting, kidney damage and an increased risk of infection are common side effects of Cisplatin which is used to treat cancer of the lungs, breast, bladder, testicles, head and neck, ovaries and lymph nodes.

Dr Charlotte Willans who is leading the study said: "As many are unfortunately aware, chemotherapy can be a very gruelling experience for the patient. Finding effective, yet non-toxic drugs is an ongoing problem, but these preliminary results are an important step in solving it."

"Our research has looked at the structure which surrounds a central silver atom. This 'shrubbery' is what determines how reactive it is and what it will interact with. Our research has used different types of these ligands to see which is the most effective against cancer cells," adds Dr Willans.

The research, still the first phase of drug development, involved exposing breast and colon cancer cells with different silver-based chemicals for six day periods. It has been shown that ligands which are co-ordinately bonded to the central silver atom through two sites are more effective than those coordinated through only one site. This may be due to the release of silver being much slower and make these compounds more effective over a longer period of time.

A major barrier to the continued development of these compounds is a lack of understanding of how they work. Over the next 12 months, research will focus on investigating how the compounds damage cancerous cells and what effects they have on healthy cells. This will establish whether these silver complexes are in fact less toxic to ordinary human tissue, and will help to design and develop the next-generation of chemotherapy drugs. This work is being carried out in collaboration with Dr. Roger Phillips at the University of Bradford and is funded by Yorkshire Cancer Research.


Story Source:

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


Journal Reference:

  1. Diana C. F. Monteiro, Roger M. Phillips, Benjamin D. Crossley, Jake Fielden, Charlotte E. Willans. Enhanced cytotoxicity of silver complexes bearing bidentate N-heterocyclic carbene ligands. Dalton Transactions, 2012; DOI: 10.1039/C2DT12399A

Cite This Page:

University of Leeds. "Silver bullet to beat cancer?." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 2 February 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/02/120202094700.htm>.
University of Leeds. (2012, February 2). Silver bullet to beat cancer?. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/02/120202094700.htm
University of Leeds. "Silver bullet to beat cancer?." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/02/120202094700.htm (accessed August 20, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Possible Ebola Patient in Isolation at California Hospital

Possible Ebola Patient in Isolation at California Hospital

Reuters - US Online Video (Aug. 20, 2014) A patient who may have been exposed to the Ebola virus is in isolation at the Kaiser Permanente South Sacramento Medical Center. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: World's Oldest Man Lives in Japan

Raw: World's Oldest Man Lives in Japan

AP (Aug. 20, 2014) A 111-year-old Japanese was certified as the world's oldest man by Guinness World Records on Wednesday. Sakari Momoi, a native of Fukushima in northern Japan, was given a certificate at a hospital in Tokyo. (Aug. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Do More Wedding Guests Make A Happier Marriage?

Do More Wedding Guests Make A Happier Marriage?

Newsy (Aug. 20, 2014) A new study found couples who had at least 150 guests at their weddings were more likely to report being happy in their marriages. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola-Hit Sierra Leone's Freetown a City on Edge

Ebola-Hit Sierra Leone's Freetown a City on Edge

AFP (Aug. 19, 2014) Residents of Sierra Leone's capital voice their fears as the Ebola virus sweeps through west Africa. Duration: 00:56 Video provided by AFP
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