Drug developers have been using nanoparticles to encapsulate a wide range of molecules for delivery to tumors. Now, they can add a large protein complex to that list thanks to research from the laboratory of Yi Tang of the University of California at Los Angeles.
The body's immune system exists to identify and destroy foreign objects, whether they are bacteria, viruses, flecks of dirt, or splinters. Unfortunately, nanoparticles designed to deliver drugs, and implanted devices, like pacemakers or artificial joints, are just as foreign and subject to the same response. Now, however, a team of researchers has identified a 'passport' for such therapeutic devices, enabling them to get past the body's security system.
Researchers at the University of Missouri have demonstrated the ability to create a multi-layered harness nanoparticle that can safely encapsulate powerful alpha-emitting radioisotopes and target tumors. The resulting nanoparticles not only offer the possibility of delivering tumor-killing alpha emitters to tumors, but also sparing healthy tissue from radiation damage.
In the quest to develop anti-cancer vaccines that would stimulate the body to destroy tumors and keep them from recurring, researchers continually run into the same problem - the immune-stimulating proteins, known as antigens, are not interacting effectively with the key immune system cells that trigger long-lasting immune responses. Now, using a novel administration system and polymer nanoparticles, a team of investigators led by Adrien Kissenpfennig of Queen's University Belfast has shown that they can deliver anticancer antigens to dendritic cells and trigger an effective immune system response against melanoma tumors.
DNA methylation, the addition of a methyl group to specific locations on a DNA strand, plays a critical role in determining which genes are active in a cell at any given time. It plays an important role in embryonic development, cell growth and reproduction, and many diseases, including cancer. Now, researchers collaborating at the Mayo Clinic and the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign have developed a novel single molecule test for detecting DNA methylation that should greatly simplify and advance the study of this important genomic process.
Engineering researchers treated thin films of polytetrafluoroethylene - a popular polymer used as a dry lubricant for machine components - with silica nanoparticles and found that the filler material significantly reduced wear of the polymer while maintaining a low level of friction.
In a new report, the Parliamentary Assembly recommends that the Council of Europe should set legal standards on nanotechnology based on the precautionary principle, but which will not hinder nanotechnology's potential beneficial use.
LAST POWER, the European Union-sponsored program aimed at developing a cost-effective and reliable technology for power electronics, today announced its three-year program achievements that place Europe at the forefront of research and the commercialization of energy-efficient devices for industrial and automotive applications, consumer electronics, renewable-energy conversion systems, and telecommunications.
Cornell researchers Jenny Sabin, assistant professor of architecture, and Dan Luo, professor of biological and environmental engineering, are among the lead investigators on a new research project to produce 'buildable, bendable and biological materials' for a wide range of applications.
Researchers at National Nanotechnology Center (NANOTEC) in Bangkok and Imperial College London (Department of Chemistry) in United Kingdom have studied the advancements of solid-state nanopores for the purpose of highlighting selected developments that will benefit scientists.
Calculations by the Rice lab of theoretical physicist Boris Yakobson found a graphene/boron anode should be able to hold a lot of lithium and perform at a proper voltage for use in lithium-ion batteries.