Gold nanoparticles to aid efficient drug delivery and diagnostics
Scientists from Indian Institute of Chemical Technology (IICT), Hyderabad, have synthesized eco-friendly gold nanoparticles using bio-resources which could be used as carriers for delivering anti-cancer drugs and also for diagnosing the disease.
How it was done?
- Scientists used leaves of some herbal plants like Bhringaraj ( Eclipta alba ) to extract the bio-compatible nanoparticles. This plant extract contains some anti-cancer bio-molecules which are conjugated with gold nanoparticles during synthesis.
How it can help?
- The gold nanoparticle is bio-compatible, easy to synthesise and multiple cancer drugs could be loaded. It could reduce the toxicity of the anti-cancer drug, increase its efficacy and ensure better retention of the drug in the blood system. When conjugated with gold nanoparticle, the anti-cancer drug could stay for more time in the tumour and enhance the therapeutic efficacy.
Although gold nanoparticles can also be produced by chemical methods, the inherent problem in that approach was of toxicity. The bio-compatible nanoparticles have shown promising results and inhibited cancer cells proliferation in lung and breast cancer cell lines. With the addition of a fluorescent molecule, it could be used to detect the position of the tumour.