Researchers at Gachon University have developed a technique to enhance lung cancer treatment with nanomaterials previously thought to be harmful to the human body as it accumulates in the lungs.
|Professor Kang Dong-woo|
Despite various attempts such as cytotoxicity and anticancer drugs, lung cancer, which is a refractory tumor with a survival rate of 10 to 13 percent for five years, is still hard to treat as the efficiency of drugs targeting the lung tumors is low.
The research team led by Professor Kang Dong-woo took a different approach to carbon nanomaterial tubes’ alleged disadvantage regarding its accumulation in lung tissues and developed it into an effective therapeutic agent for intensive treatment of lung tumors at low doses with reduced toxicity, the university said.
The team evaluated the antitumor efficacy of various sizes of carbon nanomaterials through an animal clinical test. Among the tested materials, carbon nanomaterials with a diameter of 60 to 100 nano-millimeters best activated the entry into the cell via caveolin protein, resulting in a marked reduction in the size of lung tumors.
“By simultaneously controlling the diameter of the rod-shaped nanomaterial and the activating cell inflow we were able to maximize the efficacy of nano-anticancer drugs,” Kang said. “The team plans to select biodegradable or biocompatible nanomaterials and optimize the shape and size of the nanomaterials, which will likely increase the success rate for the clinical trials.”
The results of the study were published in ACS applied materials & interfaces, a globally renowned peer-reviewed scientific journal.