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Gold May Help to Fight Cancer

 

Gold Atoms May Help Fight Cancer in the Near Future

Nanotechnology is a word that is thrown around a lot, sometimes without people truly understanding or recognizing the benefits that nanotechnologies have to offer. One very real way that nano-derived technologies may help in the future, is in the treatment of cancer. Researchers have discovered that gold atoms can be used to kill cancer cells on tumors found in mice. While this does not immediately indicate that such technology can be transferred to humans, the preliminary findings are still positive. Cancer is one of the most significant medical conditions of modern times, and there is a need to find new treatments that can improve not only life expectancy, but also the quality of treatment. Current treatment methods, including surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy, are not guaranteed to rid sufferers of cancer permanently, and in some cases can create undesirable side effects which are just a debilitating as cancer itself. Scientists hope to perform further testing of on human subjects within the next two years.

This story was originally covered at

http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2016/02/exploding-nanobubbles-can-kill-cancer-cells .

Exploding nanobubbles can kill cancer cells

Clusters of gold atoms can detect and kill cancer cells commonly left behind after tumor-removal surgery, according to a study of a new nanotechnology technique. For now, the approach has only been tried in a handful of mice. But the researchers are designing a clinical trial that could begin testing the therapy in humans in the next 2 years. If the technique proves successful in people, it could dramatically improve the odds for cancer patients, particularly in cases where surgically removing an entire tumor is impossible.

When surgeons operate on cancer patients, they do their best to remove every last diseased cell, because any left behind can grow into new tumors or metastasize throughout the body. Oncologists then typically follow up surgery with either radiation treatments or chemotherapy to increase the chances of eliminating any residual tumor cells. But this standard approach to fighting cancer is anything but foolproof.

 

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