Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Trackable drug-filled nanoparticles: Potential weapon against cancer

Date:
February 28, 2013
Source:
Karolinska Institutet
Summary:
Tiny particles filled with a drug could be a new tool for treating cancer in the future. Scientists show how such nanoparticles can be combined to secure the effective delivery of cancer drugs to tumor cells -- and how they can be given properties to make them visible in MR scanners and thus be rendered trackable.

Tiny particles filled with a drug could be a new tool for treating cancer in the future. A new study published by Swedish scientists in Particle & Particle Systems Characterization shows how such nanoparticles can be combined to secure the effective delivery of cancer drugs to tumour cells -- and how they can be given properties to make them visible in MR scanners and thus rendered trackable.

The team, which consisted of scientists from Karolinska Institutet (KI) and the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) in Stockholm, and from Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg, developed so-called 'theranostic nanoparticles' by combining therapy and diagnostics in one and the same nano material.

"For this study, we produced theranostic nanoparticles able to make pinpoint deliveries of drug payloads to breast cancer cells," says Professor Eva Malmström of the School of Chemical Science and Engineering at KTH. "They are also detectable in an MR scanner and can therefore be used diagnostically. The building blocks that we use are biodegradable and show no signs of toxicity."

The new study has resulted in a method of making such theranostic nanoparticles that spontaneously form themselves out of tailored macromolecules (polymers). The balance between hydrophilic (water attracting) and hydrophobic (water repelling) components are important to the successful outcome of this process, the latter being what makes it possible for the particles to be filled with the drug. A relatively high concentration of the naturally occurring isotope 19F (fluorine) makes the particles show up clearly in high-resolution MR tomograms, and by tracking the theranostic nanoparticles through the body, researchers can learn about how the drug is taken up by the tumour and how efficacious the treatment is.

The researchers filled the nanoparticles with the chemotherapeutic doxorubicin, which is used to treat cancer of the bladder, lungs, ovaries, and breast. They showed through experiments on cultivated cells that the particles, while harmless in themselves, are effective at killing cancer cells when loaded with the drug.

The next step is to develop the system to target brain tumours, pancreatic cancer and drug-resistant breast cancer tumours, which are currently difficult to treat effectively with chemotherapy.

"Adding targeting groups to the surface or by changing the size of or adding ionic groups to our nanoparticles will make it possible to increase the selective uptake of these particles in tumours," says Dr Andreas Nyström, Associate Professor in nanomedicine at the Swedish Medical Nanoscience Center, part of Karolinska Institutet's Department of Neuroscience.

It is hoped that one day this research will lead to tailored chemotherapy treatments that specifically seek out tumour cells. In that the drug, which is toxic to the body, can be delivered more precisely to the tumour, the treatment can be made much more effective with greatly reduced side-effects.


Story Source:

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


Journal Reference:

  1. Christian Porsch, Yuning Zhang, Åsa Östlund, Peter Damberg, Cosimo Ducani, Eva Malmström, and Andreas M. Nyström. 19F-based Polymer Nanoparticles as Breast Cancer Theranostics. Particle & Particle Systems Characterization, 28 February 2013 DOI: 10.1002/ppsc.201300018

Cite This Page:

Karolinska Institutet. "Trackable drug-filled nanoparticles: Potential weapon against cancer." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 28 February 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/02/130228113440.htm>.
Karolinska Institutet. (2013, February 28). Trackable drug-filled nanoparticles: Potential weapon against cancer. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 16, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/02/130228113440.htm
Karolinska Institutet. "Trackable drug-filled nanoparticles: Potential weapon against cancer." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/02/130228113440.htm (accessed April 16, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) — A new study conducted by researchers at Northwestern and Harvard suggests even casual marijuana use can alter your brain. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Outbreak Now Linked To 121 Deaths

Ebola Outbreak Now Linked To 121 Deaths

Newsy (Apr. 15, 2014) — The ebola virus outbreak in West Africa is now linked to 121 deaths. Health officials fear the virus will continue to spread in urban areas. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Cognitive Function: Is It All Downhill From Age 24?

Cognitive Function: Is It All Downhill From Age 24?

Newsy (Apr. 15, 2014) — A new study out of Canada says cognitive motor performance begins deteriorating around age 24. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Mt. Everest Helped Scientists Research Diabetes

How Mt. Everest Helped Scientists Research Diabetes

Newsy (Apr. 15, 2014) — British researchers were able to use Mount Everest's low altitudes to study insulin resistance. They hope to find ways to treat diabetes. Video provided by Newsy
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