Gold particles show potential in aiding pancreatic cancer treatment

21 October 2016 

A new type of treatment based on gold nanoparticles has shown potential in treating pancreatic cancer, a form of cancer that is typically difficult to treat.

Led by the University of Oklahoma and backed by the US National Institutes of Health, the research has indicated that tiny gold particles can be used to disrupt cellular communication in the area surrounding pancreatic tumours in mice.

In doing so, the treatment was shown to reduce the cell proliferation and migration that ordinarily occurs near these tumours. Moreover, it was shown that gold nanoparticles of the size used in this study had no toxic effect on normal cells.

Previous studies have indicated that gold nanoparticles can be an effective vehicle for carrying chemotherapy drug molecules into tumours, or as a means of enhancing the impact of radiation on tumours.

The team behind this research also previously found that gold nanoparticles themselves can limit tumour growth and metastasis in a model of ovarian cancer in mice.

Posted by Edward Bartel

 


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