Nanoparticles and magnetic current used to kill cancer cells

Ge-catalyzed ZnO nanowires forest-1.jpg

Franklin College researchers have used nanoparticles and alternating magnetic current to kill cancer cells in mice without harming healthy cells:

The findings, published recently in the journal Theranostics, mark the first time to the researchers' knowledge this cancer type has been treated using magnetic iron oxide nanoparticle-induced hyperthermia, or above-normal body temperatures, in laboratory mice.

"We show that we can use a small concentration of nanoparticles to kill the cancer cells," said Qun Zhao, lead author and assistant professor of physics in the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences. Researchers found that the treatment easily destroyed the cells of cancerous tumors that were composed entirely of a type of tissue that covers the surface of a body, which is also known as epithelium.

Several researchers around the globe are exploring the use of heated nanoparticles as a potential cancer treatment. Previous studies also have shown that high temperatures created by combining magnetic iron oxide nanoparticles with strong alternating magnetic currents can create enough heat to kill tumor cells. Zhao said he is optimistic about his findings, but explained that future studies will need to include larger animals before a human clinical trial could be considered.

Zhao and colleagues are working in the hybrid sphere of theranostics, a blend marshalling the forces diagnosis and therapeutics in a single step. He briefly explains this new work in the video below.



Image: Germanium-catalyzed Zinc Oxide nanowire forest created by Zhengwei pan, University of Georgia




Another researcher who is using a similar approach is Dr. Steven Curley at MD Anderson Hospital in Houston, Texas. His team is using nanoparticles embedded with metal in conjunction with a radio frequency machine to kill cancer cells while not harming surrounding healthy tissue. The RF machine heats up the metal killing the cancer cells. He, too, has been successful in eradicating cancer in petri dishes and in small animals such as rabbits and rats. He, too, is ready to experiment on larger animals, such as pigs and eventually on humans, if FDA approval is obtained. Significantly, he has had success with metasticised cancer cells, not just large tumors. His team just recently received a larger radio frequency machine to use with larger animals. 60 Minutes has twice featured John Kanzius, the inventor of the radio frequency cancer-fighting machine used by Dr. Curley and team. Go to YouTube and search "John Kanzius" and "cancer" to view more on the amazing John Kanzius. It will be interesting to see who gets to a cancer cure first. Cross your fingers.

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