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Safer nanoparticles spotlight tumors, deliver drugs
Date:2/22/2009

slowly escape as the silicon dissolves.

"The goal is to use the nanoparticles to chaperone the drug directly to the tumor, to release it into the tumor rather than other parts of the body," Sailor said.

Targeted delivery would allow doctors to use smaller doses of the drug. At doses high enough to be effective, when delivered to the whole body, doxorubicin often has toxic side effects.

At about 100 nanometers, these particles are bigger than many designed to deliver drugs, which can be just a few nanometers across a thousand times smaller than the diameter of a human hair.

Their larger size contributes to both their effectiveness and their safety. Large particles can hold more of a drug. Yet they self-destruct, and the remnants can be filtered away by the kidneys.

Close examination of vulnerable organs like liver, spleen and kidney, which help to remove toxins, revealed no lasting changes in mice treated with the new nanoparticles.


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Contact: Michael Sailor
msailor@ucsd.edu
University of California - San Diego
Source:Eurekalert  

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