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Texas Center for Cancer Nanomedicine targets 2 tough cancers
Date:11/4/2010

HOUSTON ― A $16-million, five-year grant by the National Cancer Institute's nanomedicine initiative blends the expertise of five research institutions to focus an array of innovative nanotechnologies on improving the outcome of patients with ovarian or pancreatic cancers.

The Texas Center for Cancer Nanomedicine, an NCI Center for Nanotechnology Excellence funded by the grant assembles researchers from The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth), The Methodist Hospital Research Institute, Rice University and Albert Einstein College of Medicine In New York.

Team members have developed nanoparticles made from a variety of substances that hold potential for medical use, including gold, silicon, tiny balls of fat called nanoliposomes and chitosan, which is derived from crustacean shells. A nanometer is one billionth of a meter. Nanoparticles are engineered materials that are 100 nanometers or less in size the scale where most biological functions occur.

The TCCN anticipates launching clinical trials of its nanomedicine therapies 24 months after the center opens. The grant from the NCI Alliance for Nanotechnology in Cancer will not fund the clinical trials.

"We believe our team of internationally recognized scientists will push the boundaries of cancer therapy and diagnosis, starting with two cancers that are among the hardest to detect and the most difficult to treat," said Anil Sood, M.D., professor in MD Anderson's departments of Gynecologic Oncology and Cancer Biology, one of four principal investigators.

Sood, David Gorenstein, Ph.D., deputy director of The Brown Foundation Institute of Molecular Medicine for the Prevention of Human Diseases at UTHealth, Gabriel Lopez-Berestein, M.D., professor of Experimental Therapeutics at MD Anderson, and Mauro Ferrari, Ph.D., president and CEO of The Methodist Hospital Research Institute, are co
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Contact: Scott Merville
smerville@mdanderson.org
713-792-0661
University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center
Source:Eurekalert

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