Nanotechnology in medicine reaches a new height with MicroRNA sensors
Researchers at the Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis and the Indiana University Melvin and Bren Simon Cancer Center developed a new ultrasensitive microRNA sensor that is believed to detect and treat various types of cancer.
The IUPUI published a study in November issue of ACS Nano journal which focuses on nanotechnology studies and research. In the journal they had described the new sensor is inexpensive, made by using nanotechnology applications, and can be used more than once.
They also stated the sensor is quite effective in identifying pancreatic cancer. It does so by measuring changes in levels of microRNA marks connected to pancreatic growth.
This could be a remarkable invention with the help of nanotechnology in medicine.
Rajesh Sardar, assistant professor of chemistry and chemical biology in the School of Science at IUPUI and the man behind developing the sensor said, "We used the fundamental concepts of nanotechnology to design the sensor to detect and quantify biomolecules at very low concentrations. We have designed an ultrasensitive technique so that we can see minute changes in microRNA concentrations in a patient's blood and confirm the presence of pancreatic cancer."
Murray Korc, the Myles Brand Professor of Cancer Research at the IU School of Medicine and a researcher at the IU Simon Cancer Center. Korc, is an associate of Rajesh Sardar who helped him increase the ability and detection powers of the sensor. He said if the sensor succeeds in detecting cancer cells in the pancreas, it would give the chance of early treatment.
"That's especially significant for pancreatic cancer, because for many patients it is symptom-free for years or even a decade or more, by which time it has spread to other organs, when surgical removal is no longer possible and therapeutic options are limited.”
Early detection of pancreatic cancer can increase the life span upto 5 years.
The nanotechnology based microRNA sensors can help detect the changes in RNA levels which plays a vital role in life threatening diseases such as cancer, diabetes, etc.
The sensors are made of gold nanoparticles which may sound expensive but they are not actually.
They are so small that they need a tiny part of gold. 4000 sensors can be made out of $250 worth gold. Thus it seems the sensors would be a cost effective solution for cancer detection. Nanotechnology in medicine will surely bring good days in future.Tag(s) : nanotechnology in medicine, RNA nanotechnology, DNA nanotechnology, nano medicine,