Lead author of the paper is
Triple-negative breast tumors lack the three most common breast cancer markers: estrogen receptor, progesterone receptor, and Her2. Scientists have developed treatments that target each of those markers, which have improved survival rates for those cancers.
She hopes that the new nanoparticles, which target a protein found on the surface of triple-negative breast cancer cells, will help to change that. The nanoparticles have three components: a core filled with doxorubicin, a coating of short interfering RNA (siRNA), and an outer layer that protects the particle from degradation in the bloodstream.
Doxorubicin, a drug that kills cells by damaging their DNA, is already used to treat breast cancer and other cancers, including lung, ovarian, and thyroid. The researchers based their nanoparticles on a
To improve Doxil's effectiveness, Hammond's team wanted to combine it with another type of therapy known as RNA interference (RNAi), which uses very short strands of RNA to block the expression of specific genes inside a living cell.
The researchers used a technique called layer-by-layer assembly to coat the Doxil particles with one layer of siRNA mixed with a positively charged polymer that helps to stabilize the RNA. This layer contains up to 3,500 siRNA molecules, each targeted to block a gene that allows cancer cells to pump the drug molecules out of the cells.
The study has been published in the journal ACS Nano. (ANI)
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