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 ")

Skin Electronics Can Show Electrocardiogram
'... the young men in the streets who applied polyimde OLED body film to their bared shoulders.' - Chen Qiufan, 2019.

Neurodevices For Consumers? Neuroethicists (And Philip K Dick) Say 'Caveat Emptor'
'They tried to use it today and it wouldn't work. No colors and no ceph patterns, neither one...' - Philip K. Dick, 1977.

BrainEx Restores Some Activity To Severed Pig Head
'... they placed the brain in a special solution, having all the properties of Nursing the brain cells.' - Edmond Hamilton, 1929.

Purdue Pharma Ready To Profit From OxyContin Use Or Addiction Recovery
'It may be organic damage. It may be permanent. Time'll tell, and only after you are off Substance D for a long while.' - Philip K. Dick, 1977.

 

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.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

Skin Electronics Can Show Electrocardiogram
'... the young men in the streets who applied polyimde OLED body film to their bared shoulders.'

Chinese Fern Helps Remediate Arsenic Soil
'Bioengeering had put out a spec report on the long crawly things five months back.'

Skai Air Taxi Costs The Same As Uber
'The air-taxi found its way past and around other ground-cars...'

Neurodevices For Consumers? Neuroethicists (And Philip K Dick) Say 'Caveat Emptor'
'They tried to use it today and it wouldn't work. No colors and no ceph patterns, neither one...'

NASA 3D Printed Habitat Challenge Won By AI SpaceFactory
3D printing - on Mars!

The Future Of Elon Musk's Neuralink
'Cerebral Electromagnetic Emmission Amplification and Relay System — call it artificial telepathy, if you like.'

Researchers Make You Say Anything in Videos
'[It] caused his televised image... to mouth the vowels and consonants beautifully.'

Jeff Bezos Tries Waldoes (Robotic Hands)
'Waldo put his arms into the primary pair before him...'

Asimov and Musk - Boring Company Tunnel vs. Street Race
'There was almost no sound, just a steady velvety whirr as the taxi sped along.'

Project Dylan - Amazon's Voice-Activated Wearable That Recognizes Human Emotions
Life imitates anime art.

Tesla Diagnoses Itself, Sends Part Request
'Tentacles emerged from the side of the machine and felt puzzledly at the damaged area.'

Lilium Electric Air Taxi Prototype
'The air-taxi found its way past and around other ground-cars...'

Swedes Premiere T-Pod Driverless Electric Truck
'the trucks gulped packages and scurried like beetles...'

HEL TVD Laser System To Be Built By Dynetics Lockheed Martin
'Forthwith flashes of actual flame, a bright glare leaping from one to another, sprang from the scattered group of men.'

Alcarelle Synthetic Alcohol Like Star Trek Synthehol
Bottoms up!

Datagrid Model Generation Perfect For Eternal Cities Of Science Fiction
'... there was enough flexibility to allow for wide variation.

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.