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Fighting cancer with nanoparticles: new developments in science

Fighting cancer with nanoparticles: new developments in science

The researchers’ goal is to stimulate tumor rejection by the human body, in a sort of vaccine effect.


“Nothing is the same anymore. From my perception as a person to the way I deal with things, everything is changing.” This is how Laura has felt since her breast cancer diagnosis. He adds: “Eight months have passed and it’s as if I’m a completely different person. I’m no longer me, I’m another version of myself. The radical change that this brings about in a person and their environment… it’s completely different.” .

Doctor by professionLaura was diagnosed with an infection breast cancer Stage 3. After three operations, chemotherapy and radiotherapy, he continues to undergo hormonal and experimental treatments.

Pedro, 62, survived A Lung Cancer“, but he continues to pay a “hefty bill”. The consequences of radiation and chemotherapy, which were given at the same time, can be seen on my broken nails. I can’t open bags, I can’t open anything, I can’t feel anything. Now it’s all Soft for me, and I always walk with my hands as if they are wet.”

in range European project UlyssesResearchers are working on a nanoparticle-based treatment that could one day help cancer patients and survivors like Laura and Pedro. So far, the treatment has been tested against pancreatic cancer, one of the deadliest diseases.

How it works?

The goal of this treatment is to cause Tumor rejection By the human body, in a kind of way Vaccine effect.

Cristina Vilatte, Ulysses Project Coordinator IDIBAPS“The idea is,” he explains Activate the immune system This is why it is necessary to introduce specific molecules into the tumor that can generate this Immune response“To achieve this, it is necessary to deliver genetic material to cancer cells. Nanoparticles play this role Similar to those used in vaccines against Covid-19which is being developed in Laboratory of Molecular Biology of the Institute of Oncology of Valencia.

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Jose Antonio Lopez Guerrero, researcher and head of the center, says that if the vaccine they are preparing is effective in treating pancreatic cancer, “It could open up a new therapeutic opportunity For other types of tumors that are also fatal and for which there are currently no treatment options.

If the treatment is successful, it will be A milestone in the field of science and researchLopez Guerrero adds. But since the immune response only targets cancer cells, the side effects of current treatments such as chemotherapy and radiotherapy will also be greatly reduced.