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Cancer Drug Delivery System Can Utilize Mechanical Properties of Disease Cells, says study

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Published on : Jun 07, 2018

A team of bioengineers from Penn State have notified possibilities of improvements to drug delivery systems by targeting infected cells. It will be possible with the unique mechanical properties possessed by diseased cells such as metastatic cancer cells.

The drug delivery systems for selectively targeted tumors are now being developed across the world in various labs by utilizing the concept of nanoparticle.  As this process helps in locking the highly expressed protein on the surface of the cancer cell, that is relayed on the key-lock system. Following that process the cell membrane cloaks around the nanoparticle and consumes it. Therefore if sufficient nanoparticles and their drug are consumed, then the cancer cell will die itself.

In a universal state where there always is a resistive force where there is a driving force says Zhang, - a professor of engineering science and mechanics, this case has biochemical as the driving force.

Change in the traditional methodology

Up till now the resistive force has been the mechanical energy that is needed by the membrane to cover the nanoparticle. Thus till date the driving force and designed nanoparticle were used to optimize the chemical interaction tracked by bioengineers that was known as “chemotargeting”. But a change was initiated by Zhang who believed that with the use of mechanics of the cell that will help to design nanoparticle to attain enriched targeting, it will in return form a new targeting strategy named “mechanotargeting”

In addition to it he also stated that if one wants to achieve the full potential then one can combine chemotargeting and mechanotargeting, a combination of nanoparticle –based diagnostic and therapeutic agents. The main focus to attain targeting efficacy needs a balance between driving and resistive forces. It is also important to note that if the adhesion energy is not adequately high, the nanoparticle won’t be able to get into the cell.