Features | Partner Sites | Information | LinkXpress
Sign In
PURITAN MEDICAL
Demo Company
GLOBETECH PUBLISHING LLC

New Nanomaterial Promises Enhanced Detection and Treatment of Breast Cancer

By BiotechDaily International staff writers
Posted on 07 Jan 2014
Image: Muonium [an exotic atom made up of an antimuon and an electron] trapped inside a buckyball. Muons provide a complementary probe to neutrons, particularly in the areas of magnetism, superconductivity, and charge transport (Photo courtesy of ISIS).
Image: Muonium [an exotic atom made up of an antimuon and an electron] trapped inside a buckyball. Muons provide a complementary probe to neutrons, particularly in the areas of magnetism, superconductivity, and charge transport (Photo courtesy of ISIS).
A collaboration of scientists from the United Kingdom, Denmark, Brazil, and Germany are devising new detection and treatment technology for breast cancer patients.

The study’s findings were published December 2013 in the Journal of Alloys and Compounds. Current diagnostic methods such as mammograms can only detect between 65% and 95% of tumors, and developing better ways of detection is of prime urgency. If not detected and treated early enough, breast cancer can spread to other areas of the body, increasing the probability that the disease will become lethal.

The team of scientists has been using the Polaris instrument at the ISIS pulsed neutron and muon source at the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory (Harwell Oxford, UK) to develop a new bio-nanocomposite that they hope will eventually lead to earlier detection, and more successful treatment, of breast cancer. The new substance exploits the fact that cancer cells attract a molecule called hydroxyapatite, which is a component of bones. The researchers are developing magnetic nanoparticles coated with a biocompatible polymer that includes hydroxyapatite nanocrystals. When administered into the body, these nanoparticles should travel right to cancer cells, and once they do, they make it much easier to detect the tumor on an MRI scan.

Not only do the nanoparticles help to identify tumors, but they may also help to block the metastasis to other areas of the body, as hydroxyapatite is known to suppress that facet of tumor activity.

The next phase of study is to incorporate antitumor agents into the nanoparticles. The magnetic nature of the nanoparticles means that they can be directed to the site of the tumor by using magnets outside of the body. If antitumor drugs can be added to the nanoparticles, then they can be used to deliver the treatment directly to the tumor, optimizing the effectiveness of the treatment and reducing the risk of harmful side effects--imagine a fleet of tiny drones, delivering anticancer weapons right where they are needed.

This research is at a very early stage, and far more study is required, according to the scientists, before it can be developed into a treatment option.

ISIS generates beams of neutrons and muons that allow scientists to study materials at the atomic level using a suite of instruments, frequently described as super-microscopes. It supports a national and international community of more than 2,000 scientists who use neutrons and muons for research in physics, chemistry, materials science, geology, engineering, and biology.

Related Links:

ISIS



Channels

Drug Discovery

view channel
Image: Cancer cells were treated with a control (left) and the overstimulating compound MCB-613 (right) (Photo courtesy of Dr. Lei Wang, Baylor University College of Medicine).

Drug Candidate Propels Cancer Cells into Fatal Overdrive

A candidate drug that destroys cancer cells by stimulating them to produce more proteins than the cells can actually process was shown to kill a wide variety of cancer cells in culture and to inhibit tumor... Read more

Lab Technologies

view channel
Image: The Synergy Neo2 Multi-Mode Reader recently received Cisbio HTRF certification (Photo courtesy of BioTek Instruments Inc.).

High-Speed Multimode Microplate Reader Receives Homogenous Time-Resolved Fluorescence Certification

A new high-performance, high-speed microplate reader has received HTRF (homogenous time-resolved fluorescence) accreditation that certifies that it complies with standards for detection set by a major... Read more

Business

view channel

Innovative Microbial Diagnostics Developer Acquired by Biomedical Giant

A biotech company noted for its development of innovative products in the field of molecular microbiology diagnostics has been acquired by one of the world's largest biomedical corporations. GeneWEAVE BioSciences, Inc.(Los Gatos, CA, USA) and Roche (Basel, Switzerland) have announced that Roche will be purchasing the... Read more
 
Copyright © 2000-2015 Globetech Media. All rights reserved.