Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

Home > Press > Nanoshell Shields Foreign Enzymes Used to Starve Cancer Cells from Immune System

The shell’s pores are too small for the enzyme to escape but big enough for diffusion of amino acids that feed cancer cells in and out of the particle. The enzymes remain trapped inside where they deplete any amino acids that enter.  Photo courtesy of Inanc Ortac.
The shell’s pores are too small for the enzyme to escape but big enough for diffusion of amino acids that feed cancer cells in and out of the particle. The enzymes remain trapped inside where they deplete any amino acids that enter.

Photo courtesy of Inanc Ortac.

Abstract:
Nanoengineers at the University of California, San Diego have developed a nanoshell to protect foreign enzymes used to starve cancer cells as part of chemotherapy. Their work is featured on the June 2014 cover of the journal Nano Letters.

Nanoshell Shields Foreign Enzymes Used to Starve Cancer Cells from Immune System

San Diego, CA | Posted on June 17th, 2014

Enzymes are naturally smart machines that are responsible for many complex functions and chemical reactions in biology. However, despite their huge potential, their use in medicine has been limited by the immune system, which is designed to attack foreign intruders. For example, doctors have long relied on an enzyme called asparaginase to starve cancer cells as a patient undergoes chemotherapy. But because asparaginase is derived from a nonhuman organism, E. Coli, it is quickly neutralized by the patient's immune system and sometimes produces an allergic reaction. In animal studies with asparaginase, and other therapeutic enzymes, the research team found that their porous hollow nanoshell effectively shielded enzymes from the immune system, giving them time to work.

Asparaginase works by reacting with amino acids that are an essential nutrient for cancer cells. The reaction depletes the amino acid, depriving the abnormal cells from the nutrients they need to proliferate.

"Ours is a pure engineering solution to a medical problem," said Inanc Ortac (Ph.D. '13), who developed the technology as part of his doctoral research in the laboratory of nanoengineering professor Sadik Esener at UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering.

The nanoshell acts like a filter in the bloodstream. The enzymes are loaded into the nanoparticle very efficiently through pores on its surface and later encapsulated with a shell of nanoporous silica. The shell's pores are too small for the enzyme to escape but big enough for diffusion of amino acids that feed cancer cells in and out of the particle. The enzymes remain trapped inside where they deplete any amino acids that enter.

"This is a platform technology that may find applications in many different fields. Our starting point was solving a problem for cancer therapeutics," said Ortac.

Ortac is currently serving as the chief technology officer of DevaCell, a local start-up which licensed the technology and is working to commercialize it under the name Synthetic Hollow Enzyme Loaded nanoShells or SHELS. Ortac, together with graduate student Ya-san Yeh, recently took the top prize at Research Expo 2014 at UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering. Yeh discussed her role in the project in our video linked below. Ortac also won first place in the Collegiate Inventors Competition in 2012 and UC San Diego Entrepreneur Challenge in 2013 with a business plan based on the technology. Just recently, San Diego Business Journal recognized the researchers with the 2014 Innovation Award in Medical Research. The research was supported by the National Cancer Institute (5U54CA119335).

####

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Catherine Hockmuth

858-822-1359

Copyright © University of California - San Diego

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

Particles from outer space are wreaking low-grade havoc on personal electronics February 19th, 2017

Liquid metal nano printing set to revolutionize electronics: Creating integrated circuits just atoms thick February 18th, 2017

Engineers shrink microscope to dime-sized device February 17th, 2017

Francis Alexander Named Deputy Director of Brookhaven Lab's Computational Science Initiative February 16th, 2017

Videos/Movies

Graphene foam gets big and tough: Rice University's nanotube-reinforced material can be shaped, is highly conductive February 13th, 2017

First ever blueprint unveiled to construct a large scale quantum computer February 3rd, 2017

The shape of melting in two dimensions: University of Michigan team uses Titan to explore fundamental phase transitions February 2nd, 2017

Metallic hydrogen, once theory, becomes reality: Harvard physicists succeed in creating 'the holy grail of high-pressure physics' January 28th, 2017

Nanomedicine

Good vibrations help reveal molecular details: Rice University scientists combine disciplines to pinpoint small structures in unlabeled molecules February 15th, 2017

In-cell molecular sieve from protein crystal February 14th, 2017

Cedars-Sinai, UCLA Scientists Use New ‘Blood Biopsies’ With Experimental Device to Speed Cancer Diagnosis and Predict Disease Spread: Leading-Edge Research Is Part of National Cancer Moonshot Initiative February 13th, 2017

Meta-lenses bring benchtop performance to small, hand-held spectrometer: Game-changing nanostructure-based lenses allow smaller devices, increased functionality February 9th, 2017

Discoveries

Particles from outer space are wreaking low-grade havoc on personal electronics February 19th, 2017

Liquid metal nano printing set to revolutionize electronics: Creating integrated circuits just atoms thick February 18th, 2017

Engineers shrink microscope to dime-sized device February 17th, 2017

Research opens door to smaller, cheaper, more agile communications tech February 16th, 2017

Announcements

Particles from outer space are wreaking low-grade havoc on personal electronics February 19th, 2017

Liquid metal nano printing set to revolutionize electronics: Creating integrated circuits just atoms thick February 18th, 2017

Engineers shrink microscope to dime-sized device February 17th, 2017

Francis Alexander Named Deputy Director of Brookhaven Lab's Computational Science Initiative February 16th, 2017

Interviews/Book Reviews/Essays/Reports/Podcasts/Journals/White papers

Particles from outer space are wreaking low-grade havoc on personal electronics February 19th, 2017

Liquid metal nano printing set to revolutionize electronics: Creating integrated circuits just atoms thick February 18th, 2017

Engineers shrink microscope to dime-sized device February 17th, 2017

Research opens door to smaller, cheaper, more agile communications tech February 16th, 2017

Grants/Awards/Scholarships/Gifts/Contests/Honors/Records

Good vibrations help reveal molecular details: Rice University scientists combine disciplines to pinpoint small structures in unlabeled molecules February 15th, 2017

Material can turn sunlight, heat and movement into electricity -- all at once: Extracting energy from multiple sources could help power wearable technology February 9th, 2017

National Space Society Honors NASA's William H. Gerstenmaier With 2017 Space Pioneer Award January 31st, 2017

The Kepler-K2 Team Wins the National Space Society's 2017 Space Pioneer Award for Science and Engineering January 29th, 2017

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