Natural nanotech anticancer drug

November 2, 2018 by David Bradley, Inderscience
Natural nanotech anticancer drug
Credit: Inderscience

Sanguinarine is a natural product, a chemical made by certain plants including the bloodroot plant (Sanguinaria canadensis), the Mexican prickly poppy (Argemone mexicana), Chelidonium majus, and Macleaya cordata. It is a slightly toxic polycyclic ammonium ion, an alkaloid, and has been demonstrated to have antitumour and antiviral properties. It also blocks the formation of blood vessels, it is antiangiogenic, and so has even greater potential as an anticancer agent.

Now, a team from Russia has investigated the potential of this compound to be delivered to diseased target sites in the body using nanoscopic carriers known as liposomes. The team suggests that the liposomes can more efficiently deliver the putative compound to cancer than it simply being delivered by conventional chemotherapy methods (as a drug solution given either by mouth or intravenously).

Their tests revealed that the liposome preparations gave a prolonged release of the drug rather than it being processed quickly by the liver and excreted by the kidneys as happens with conventional drugs. Indeed, the drug-bearing showed a dose-dependent response in terms of cytotoxicity in the laboratory against B16 cells (experimental mouse melanoma cells).

"Liposomal sanguinarine may have advantages for in vivo anticancer therapy, due to its lower toxicity and 'passive targeting' as a result of enhanced permeability of tumour vessels," the team reports in the International Journal of Nanotechnology.

Explore further: Researchers explore a new way of specific drug delivery using liposomes

More information: Preparation of liposomes containing benzophenanthridine alkaloid sanguinarine and evaluation of its cytotoxic activity. International Journal of Nanotechnology.
DOI: 10.1504/IJNT.2018.094785

Related Stories

X-ray triggered nano-bubbles to target cancer

July 16, 2018

Innovative drug filled nano-bubbles, able to be successfully triggered in the body by X-rays, have been developed by researchers, paving the way for a new range of cancer treatments for patients.

Focussed ultrasound used to improve effects of cancer drugs

July 10, 2018

Researchers have made a breakthrough in more precisely targeting drugs to cancers. Using ultrasound and lipid drug carriers (liposomes), a multi-disciplinary team of biomedical engineers, oncologists, radiologists and anaesthetists ...

Recommended for you

Bright colors produced by laser heating

January 15, 2019

Most of the colors on today's paper and fabric are made using dyes or pigments. But colors can also be produced by modifying a material's surface at the nanoscale, causing the surface to reflect or scatter different frequencies ...

Pore size influences nature of complex nanostructures

January 15, 2019

Building at the nanoscale is not like building a house. Scientists often start with two-dimensional molecular layers and combine them to form complex three-dimensional architectures. And instead of nails and screws, these ...

0 comments

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.