Navigation Links
Developments in nanobiotechnology at UCSB point to medical applications

(Santa Barbara, Calif.) Two new groundbreaking scientific papers by researchers at UC Santa Barbara demonstrate the synthesis of nanosize biological particles with the potential to fight cancer and other illnesses. The studies introduce new approaches that are considered "green" nanobiotechnology because they use no artificial compounds.

Luc Jaeger, associate professor of chemistry and biochemistry at UCSB, explained that there is nothing short of a revolution going on in his field one that permeates all areas of biochemistry, especially his area of nanobiotechnology. The revolution involves understanding the role of RNA in cells.

"Considering the fact that up to 90 percent of the human genome is transcribed into RNA, it becomes clear that RNA is one of the most important biopolymers on which life is based," said Jaeger. "We are still far from understanding all the tremendous implications of RNA in living cells."

Jaeger's team is putting together complex three-dimensional RNA molecules nanosize polyhedrons that could be used to fight disease. The molecules self assemble into the new shapes. The work is funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and there is a patent pending jointly between NIH and UCSB on the new designs.

"We are interested in using RNA assemblies to deliver silencing RNAs and therapeutic RNA aptamers to target cancer and other diseases," said Jaeger. "It is clear that RNA is involved in a huge number of key processes that are related to health issues."

Jaeger believes the RNA-based approaches to delivering new therapies in the body will be safer than those using artificial compounds that might have undesirable side effects down the line.

"By using RNA molecules as our primary medium, we are practicing 'green' nanobiotechnology," explained Jaeger. "The research program developed in my lab at UCSB aims at contributing in a positive way to medicine and synthetic biology. We try to avoid any approaches that raise controversial bioethical issues in the public square. It's not an easy task, but I am convinced that it will pay off in the long run."

The more recent of the two scientific papers describing the new work "In vitro assembly of cubic RNA-based scaffolds designed in silicon" published online Monday, August 30, by Nature Nanotechnology. The earlier paper "A polyhedron made of tRNAs" by Severcan and colleagues was published online on July 18 by Nature Chemistry. The print edition of this article will be published in Nature Chemistry's September issue.


Contact: Gail Gallessich
University of California - Santa Barbara

Related biology news :

1. Bovine genome provides clues to possible new developments
2. New developments in reproductive medicine
3. ACS webinar features developments in online water and wastewater monitoring
4. Conference to discuss sensing technology developments and opportunities
5. Deep biosphere research points to new methods for recovering petroleum
6. Human protein atlas will help pinpoint disease
7. Duke study pinpoints potential green collar job growth in US
8. Leeds research points to new therapy for hepatitis C treatment
9. First-ever socioeconomic study on coral reefs points to challenges of coastal resource management
10. Study first to pinpoint why analgesic drugs may be less potent in females than in males
11. Studies point to novel target for treating arrhythmias
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
Developments in nanobiotechnology at UCSB point to medical applications
(Date:4/15/2016)... -- A new partnership announced today will help life ... a fraction of the time it takes today, ... insurance policies to consumers without requiring inconvenient and ... rapid testing (A1C, Cotinine and HIV) and higi,s ... pulse, BMI, and activity data) available at local ...
(Date:3/31/2016)...   LegacyXChange, Inc. ... LegacyXChange is excited to release its first ... be launched online site for trading 100% guaranteed authentic ... also provide potential shareholders a sense of the value ... industry that is notorious for fraud. The video is ...
(Date:3/22/2016)... PUNE, India , March 22, 2016 ... new market research report "Electronic Sensors Market for ... Fingerprint, Proximity, & Others), Application (Communication & ... and Geography - Global Forecast to 2022", ... consumer industry is expected to reach USD ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)...   EpiBiome , a precision microbiome engineering company, ... financing from Silicon Valley Bank (SVB). The financing will ... its drug development efforts, as well as purchase additional ... has been an incredible strategic partner to us – ... would provide," said Dr. Aeron Tynes Hammack , ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... ... In a new case report published today in STEM CELLS Translational Medicine, ... after being treated for breast cancer benefitted from an injection of stem cells derived ... debilitating, frequent side effect of cancer treatment. , Lymphedema refers to the ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 2016 Andrew D ... Published recently in ... from touchONCOLOGY, Andrew D Zelenetz , discusses ... care is placing an increasing burden on healthcare ... therapies. With the patents on many biologics expiring, ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... ... and technical consulting, provides a free webinar on Performing Quality Investigations: ... 2016 at 12pm CT at no charge. , Incomplete investigations are still a ...
Breaking Biology Technology: