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September 15th, 2005
Joe Alper: Initial clinical trials with some of these apoptosis detectors have shown promise, and now investigators are bringing the power of nanotechnology to bear on this effort in order to create powerful systems that would ultimately be capable of both delivering an anti-tumor drug and monitoring, in real time, if it is triggering cell death. The development of a nanotechnology-enabled apoptosis detector is one of the strategic areas of emphasis of the NCI Alliance for Nanotechnology in Cancer.
Though this work is still in its early stages, its potential is a harbinger of things to come. "Having a real-time apoptosis detector would represent a significant advance in cancer therapy, one that would let us alter treatment to reflect how each patient responds to a given set of drugs soon after being given those drugs," remarked James Olson, M.D.
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