Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors





Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


android tablet pc

Home > Press > Early phase of atherosclerosis imaged

Nico Sommerdijk. Photo: Bart van Overbeeke.
Nico Sommerdijk. Photo: Bart van Overbeeke.

Abstract:
Atherosclerosis is characterized by hardening and thickening of artery walls, with serious health consequences. Researchers at TU/e have imaged the stages in the calcification at a nanometer scale. The growth of hardening follows almost the same process as bone or tooth formation. The results will be published in Nature Materials.

Early phase of atherosclerosis imaged

The Netherlands | Posted on November 21st, 2010

The images made by researcher Nico Sommerdijk (Laboratory of Materials and Interface Chemistry, Department of Chemical Engineering and Chemistry) and his team resolve a long-standing dispute. As long ago as 1965, Aaron S. Posner suggested in the journal Nature how the calcification - the formation of calcium phosphate - in a biological environment takes place, although this met with considerable resistance at the time, Sommerdijk explains.

However, his observations now confirm Posner's 45-year-old idea. Calcium and phosphate ions dissolved in the blood are not deposited directly as crystalline material on the artery wall, but first pass through an intermediate phase. In this phase they first form prenucleation clusters, followed by amorphous nanoparticles measuring approximately 50 nanometers (1 nanometer is a millionth of a millimeter). Only then does crystallization occur, causing hardening of the artery wall. The researchers hope that this understanding will be used to develop new forms of treatment for atherosclerosis.

Serum

Because atherosclerosis cannot be observed at a nanometer scale in living persons, the researchers used imitation serum - a fluid containing exactly the same substances as those found in the blood itself, except for the organic materials. The researchers placed this serum in contact with a membrane with the same characteristics as the artery wall, on which the process of calcification then began. They imaged the various steps of this process using a special electron microscope, the cryoTitan. This microscope allows researchers to observe very rapidly frozen samples at the level of individual atoms, so that a process can be arrested and viewed step-by-step.

All living beings

Sommerdijk has already showed that the process of shell growth and bone formation takes place in the same way as atherosclerosis. "It seems that all mineralization systems in living beings take place in the same way. And there are increasing indications that it works similarly everywhere", says Sommerdijk.

Three articles in Nature Materials

The publication will appear in the December edition of the leading scientific journal Nature Materials, which also contains another article by Nico Sommerdijk. This deals with understanding the mechanisms of bone growth; a related research project. According to the editors of Nature Materials it is rare for two publications by the same researcher to appear in the same edition of the journal. "It happens maybe once a year", says Alison Stoddart of Nature Materials. "Only five to ten per cent of the articles submitted are actually selected for publication. So if two are published at the same time it's quite a rare event." As well as the articles themselves, the journal is also publishing a two-page editorial in which an external specialist presents his own view of Sommerdijk's research findings.

The role of prenucleation clusters in surface-induced calcium phosphate crystallization. Archan Dey, Paul H.H. Bomans, Frank A. Müller, Julia Will, Peter M. Frederik, Gijsbertus de With and Nico A.J.M. Sommerdijk. The article has already been published in the online edition of Nature Materials on 14 November 2010.

####

For more information, please click here

Copyright © Technische Universiteit Eindhoven

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

News and information

'Exotic' material is like a switch when super thin April 18th, 2014

Innovative strategy to facilitate organ repair April 18th, 2014

Oxford Instruments Asylum Research Introduces the MFP-3D InfinityTM AFM Featuring Powerful New Capabilities and Stunning High Performance April 18th, 2014

Conductive Inks: booming to $2.8 billion by 2024 April 17th, 2014

Academic/Education

Director Wally Pfister joins UC Berkeley neuroengineers to discuss the science behind ‘Transcendence’ April 7th, 2014

First annual science week highlights STEM pipeline and partnerships: UB, SUNY Buffalo State and ECC team up with the City of Buffalo and its schools for April 7-11 events April 3rd, 2014

Global 450 consortium announces new general manager of internal operations: TSMC’s Cheng-Chung Chien Receives Unanimous Support, Brings History of Innovation and Efficiency to Global Consortium of Companies Driving Industry Transition to 450mm Wafer Technology March 26th, 2014

NanoTecNexus to Host "Chemistry of Wine" Fundraiser in Support of STEM Education - Collaborations Key to Success - March 20th, 2014

Nanomedicine

Innovative strategy to facilitate organ repair April 18th, 2014

Novel stapled peptide nanoparticle combination prevents RSV infection, study finds April 17th, 2014

More effective kidney stone treatment, from the macroscopic to the nanoscale April 17th, 2014

High-temperature plasmonics eyed for solar, computer innovation April 17th, 2014

Discoveries

'Exotic' material is like a switch when super thin April 18th, 2014

Innovative strategy to facilitate organ repair April 18th, 2014

Thinnest feasible membrane produced April 17th, 2014

More effective kidney stone treatment, from the macroscopic to the nanoscale April 17th, 2014

Announcements

'Exotic' material is like a switch when super thin April 18th, 2014

Innovative strategy to facilitate organ repair April 18th, 2014

Oxford Instruments Asylum Research Introduces the MFP-3D InfinityTM AFM Featuring Powerful New Capabilities and Stunning High Performance April 18th, 2014

Transparent Conductive Films and Sensors Are Hot Segments in Printed Electronics: Start-ups in these fields show above-average momentum, while companies working on emissive displays such as OLED are fading, Lux Research says April 17th, 2014

Nanobiotechnology

Targeting cancer with a triple threat: MIT chemists design nanoparticles that can deliver three cancer drugs at a time April 15th, 2014

Biologists Develop Nanosensors to Visualize Movements and Distribution of Plant Stress Hormone April 15th, 2014

In latest generation of tiny biosensors, size isn't everything: UCLA researchers overturn conventional wisdom on nanowire-based diagnostic devices April 11th, 2014

Virus structure inspires novel understanding of onion-like carbon nanoparticles April 10th, 2014

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE







  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More














ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project







© Copyright 1999-2014 7th Wave, Inc. All Rights Reserved PRIVACY POLICY :: CONTACT US :: STATS :: SITE MAP :: ADVERTISE