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Common Ingredient in Big Macs and Sodas Can Stabilize Gold Nanoparticles for Medical Use

cture consisting of a complex mixture of potassium, calcium and magnesium salts derived from arabic acid. The scientists found that gum arabic could be used to absorb and assimilate metals and create a "coating" that makes gold nanoparticles stable and nontoxic.

Katti and Raghuraman Kannan, assistant professor of radiology, have been collaborating on the development of biocompatible gold and silver nanoparticles for medical applications. "We found that gum arabic can effectively 'lock' gold nanoparticles to produce nontoxic, nanoparticulate constructs that can be used for potential applications in nanomedicine," Katti said. "We have developed a new class of hybrid gold nanoparticles that are stable and can be administered either orally or through intravenous injection within the biological system."

This finding could lead to the development of readily injectable gold nanoparticles that are nontoxic and stable. Mansoor Amiji, professor of pharmaceutical sciences in the Bouve College of Health .

Sciences' School of Pharmacy and co-director of the Nanomedicine Education and Research Consortium at Northeastern University in Boston, said this represents a major scientific discovery that will initiate a new generation of biocompatible gold nanoparticles.

"The excellent in vivo stability profiles of such gold nanoconstructs will open up new pathways for the intratumoral delivery of gold nanoparticles in diagnostic imaging and therapeutic applications for cancer," Amiji said.

The new generation of trimeric amino acids peptides discovered by Katti in 1999 (referred to by Amijii as 'Katti Peptides') have provided a solid chemical platform and have become sources of a number of other discoveries. Their applications in the development of drugs for Wilscons' disease; their utility for the generation of a wide spectrum of metallic nanoparticles, including gold and silver; and as amphiphilic building blocks in a var
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