Nanoparticles can distribute medicine in the right doses

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Nanoparticles can distribute medicine in the right doses

When heated by infrared radiation, new nanoparticles are destroyed and release the substances contained in them.

Nanoparticles (yellow) in stem cells, cell nuclei are colored blue. (Photo UCL News / Flickr.com) View full size ‹ ›

The effectiveness of the medicine greatly depends on how much of it reaches the sore spot. If there is too little medicine, it will not work; if too much, there is a risk that it will damage surrounding healthy tissue. Ideally, we should have a system that ensures targeted delivery of the drug in exactly the quantity needed. And it is desirable that we ourselves can regulate the flow of the substance to the address.

Such smart delivery systems are now actively being developed around the world, and one of them is described in the journal Bioconjugate Chemistry by researchers from ITMO University. They enclosed the drug in nanocontainers, the shell of which consists of silver and titanium oxide. If you irradiate the nanocontainers with infrared light with a wavelength of 980 nanometers, the silver will heat up and destroy the entire structure, and the drug will come out.

Nanocontainers were tested on bacteria with genetic modifications: if the carbohydrate L-arabinose entered the cell, the bacterium began to synthesize green fluorescent protein. It was L-arabinose that was placed in containers. Irradiated with infrared light, the nanoparticles released their contents into the external environment with bacteria, which synthesized a fluorescent protein and began to glow green.

The nanocontainers themselves do not harm living cells, while at the same time, infrared radiation penetrates quite deeply into living tissues. It is easy to imagine how nanoparticles collected in a tumor release an antitumor drug when exposed to light. Such nanocontainers could be useful not only in medical and other technologies where chemical reactions need to be precisely controlled, but even in the development of a computer that uses biological molecules instead of conventional silicon chips.

The work was carried out with the support of the Russian Science Foundation (RSF).

Based on materials from the press service of the Russian Science Foundation.

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William Anderson

Meet William Anderson, a versatile individual with a passion for creativity and a deep appreciation for the world of video games. Armed with a diploma from the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology, he entered the professional world in 2006. As a safety manager, operation dispatcher at PST Transport Inc from 2007 to 2009, William displayed his commitment to ensuring a safe and efficient work environment. Today, he thrives as a content creator and creative director, channeling his creativity into captivating projects. While he identifies as an introvert, William is a travel guru, blazing new trails in the web landscape. With an affinity for pop culture and a love for zombies, he is an evil beer scholar and a discerning analyst, always seeking to unravel the depths of his passions.