One of the most effective treatmentscancer is currently chemotherapy. And for all its merits, it has a significant drawback: extremely high toxicity to the body. But soon, as Angewandte Chemie reports, a series of antitumor chemotherapeutic drugs with low toxicity can be created. According to scientists, these drugs can be created using gold.
The discovery belongs to specialists from the university.Edinburgh (Scotland). A new method is the use of gold dust and silver nanoparticles in the "preparation" of the drug. The use of metal particles in drugs for treatment is not new in itself. In recent years, more than one study on this topic has been conducted. In some cases, the nanoparticles serve as a means to remove the tumor, acting as a "guide" for the drug, which is "attracted" to the site of the tumor lesion. In other cases, nanoparticles act as a means for drug delivery.
But the Scottish scientists found that theseparticles can also be used to enhance the action of a substance. Specialists drew attention to the fact that gold accelerates many reactions in the body. This observation led them to suggest that a similar property of nanoparticles can be used to create a new type of chemotherapy that will work only in the presence of gold atoms or nanoparticles. Thus, gold nanoparticles can be separately introduced into the human body, delivered to the tumor, and then the components of the drug, which will be “collected” only directly in the lesion. This approach will eliminate the toxic effects of chemotherapy on the body as a whole. According to one of the authors of the study, Asir Unchichi-Brochet,
“We discovered new chemical properties in gold, aboutwhich we did not know before, and our experiments have shown that this metal can be used in order to very “safely enable” chemotherapy directly inside the tumor. In the future, devices that inject gold particles only into the tumor can significantly reduce the side effects for the rest of the body. ”
Based on materials from RIA Novosti news agency