Science Fiction Dictionary
A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z

 

Nanobees Sting Tumors With Melittin

Nanobees are nanoparticles laden with melittin, an ingredient in bee venom. Melittin is known to have therapeutic uses, but its use in medicine has been minimal due to the fact that it does damage to healthy cells as well. Researchers at Washington University in St. Louis came up with the nanobee idea as a way to get melittin directly to tumor cells.


(Nanobees with melittin sting cancer cells)

Among Dr. Soman's first experiments was to see how melittin interacted with the nanoparticles. He found that not only did it attach quickly to the outer, lipid layer of the nanoparticles, but that the attachment was stable, suggesting that the nanoparticle-melittin combination, or nanobee, might be able to circulate in the body and not attack healthy cells.

The next issue was to figure out how to get the melittin, once it came upon a tumor, to detach from the nanoparticle and transfer to the cancer cells, taking its cell-killing properties with it. The researchers accomplished this by attaching a third component to the mix—a ligand, which is a chemical that binds two distinct compounds. The ligand they used in this case—which Dr. Schlesinger likens to a "molecular ZIP Code"—has an affinity for attaching to a receptor plentiful in newly formed blood vessels. That's useful in cancer treatment because tumors tend to form new blood vessels to feed themselves and grow.

In tests with mice, the nanobees slowed the growth of breast-cancer tumors significantly, shrank melanoma tumors and reduced precancerous lesions (compared with control groups).

These "nanobees" are yet another effort to find a way to deliver a measured quantity of agent to a very particular place in the body. When science fiction writers think about it, one way to solve this problem is to make a person very small. As in the sf classic Fantastic Voyage.


(Proteus from Fantastic Voyage)

From WSJ via MedGadget.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 10/3/2009)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )

Related News Stories - (" Medical ")

Prototype 3D Printer Could Print Arteries In Seconds
'... in the tank the new body and the new mind and memory and life has taken almost instant form.' - Clifford Simak, 1963.

NextSense Earbuds Spy On Your Brain
'Your cephalochromoscope that cost you nine hundred dollars... colors and ceph patterns...' - Philip K. Dick, 1977.

Do Contagious Vaccines Work Better?
'...suppose we do plant an epidemic of Nine-Day Fever in Zone Red.' - Robert Heinlein, 1952.

Artificial, Implantable Kidney Prototype
'George Walt's corporate existence proved the workability of wholly mechanical organs...' - Philip K. Dick, 1964.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

Science Fiction Timeline
1600-1899
1900-1939
1940's   1950's
1960's   1970's
1980's   1990's
2000's   2010's

Current News

Lightyear 0 World's First Production-Ready Solar Car
'It could maintain a steady six miles per hour...'

AI Robots Excel At Trash Sorting And Recycling
'Then they press one of these here thirteen buttons...'

Could Increased Space Rocketry Damage The Ozone Layer?
'...without burning a single hydrocarbon molecule to injure the diseased atmosphere any further.'

Dyson's Secret Household Robots
'...work a human being does around a house.'

Festo BionicSwift Bird Robots Described In 1930
'Bird-like robots now descended from the ceiling of the theatre...'

Robotics Jobs In The Food Industry
'The efficient robot waiter of the Sky Club had cleared away the remnants of an epicurean meal.'

Prototype 3D Printer Could Print Arteries In Seconds
'...in the tank the new body and the new mind and memory and life has taken almost instant form.'

China Wants 'Hard Kill' Capability To Counter Starlink Satellites
'pirate three-vee satellites sanded out of orbit...'

Low-Cost Gel Pulls Water From Atmosphere Like Star Wars Vaporator
'The atmosphere yielded its moisture with reluctance. It had to be coaxed down...'

Pixy Flying Selfie Drone From Snap
'It hovered behind him like a large tame bee.'

Smallest Remote-Controlled Walking Robot Crabs
A robot 'as big as a dust grain.'

Pleasure Model Replicants Now Available
'Want a life-companion... sir, I can get you up any style you want.'

Robot Covered In Living Human Skin
'Hey buddy, you got a dead cat in there or what?'

Dall-E 2 Creates Art To Order
'Something different,' she said. 'Maybe a combined Miro and Goya.'

SpaceX Rocket Quick Reaction Force
'... the ship went into free flight, arching in a high parabola.'

Do AIs Create Their Own Language?
'the Mentanicals have begun to acquire a faculty not primarily given them by their inventors — the faculty of speech...'

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.