Nanoparticles carry chemotherapy drug deeper into solid tumors

Jun 26, 2007

A new drug delivery method using nano-sized molecules to carry the chemotherapy drug doxorubicin to tumors improves the effectiveness of the drug in mice and increases their survival time, according to a study published online June 26 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

In the past, similar drug carriers have improved targeted delivery of the drugs and reduced toxicity, but they sometimes decreased the drugs’ ability to kill the tumor cells. Using a new drug carrier, Ning Tang of the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Beijing and colleagues compared tumor growth and survival in mice that were given doxorubicin in the nanocarriers or on its own.

Doxorubicin delivered by nanocarriers was more effective in preventing tumor growth than free doxorubicin, and the mice receiving this treatment method lived longer and had fewer toxic side effects.

“Encapsulation of doxorubicin…increased its accumulation and penetration in tumors in terms of both the percentage of cells that were reached by the drug and the intracellular levels that were attained,” the authors write.

In an accompanying editorial, Matthew Dreher, Ph.D., of the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Md., and Ashutosh Chilkoti, Ph.D., of Duke University in Durham, N.C., discuss the future of drug delivery, which they think should focus on three important research areas—drug combinations, targeting, and integration.

“The study by Tang [and colleagues] is a simple but effective demonstration of the benefits of integration of a drug with an appropriate carrier to yield a striking gain in efficacy,” the authors write. “May the days of pharmacological missiles that miss their target and friendly fire that kills patients soon be over!”

Source: Journal of the National Cancer Institute

Explore further: Development of gold nanoparticles that control osteogenic differentiation of stem cells

Related Stories

Training pig skin cells for neural development

May 01, 2015

A pig's skin cells may hold the key to new treatments and cures for devastating human neurological diseases. Researchers from the University of Georgia's Regenerative Bioscience Center have discovered a process ...

Lightbulb using graphene is to go on sale this year

Mar 30, 2015

The BBC reported on Saturday that a graphene bulb is set for shops, to go on sale this year. UK developers said their graphene bulb will be the first commercially viable consumer product using the super- ...

New target for anticancer drugs—RNA

Apr 06, 2015

Most of today's anticancer drugs target the DNA or proteins in tumor cells, but a new discovery by University of California, Berkeley, scientists unveils a whole new set of potential targets: the RNA intermediaries ...

Scientists find clues to cancer drug failure

Mar 02, 2015

Cancer patients fear the possibility that one day their cells might start rendering many different chemotherapy regimens ineffective. This phenomenon, called multidrug resistance, leads to tumors that defy ...

Recommended for you

Artificial muscles get graphene boost

10 hours ago

Researchers in South Korea have developed an electrode consisting of a single-atom-thick layer of carbon to help make more durable artificial muscles.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.