Researchers at The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center have perfected a delivery system for anticancer treatment that zeroes in on a tumor and becomes part of its supporting tissue. This new "cellular vehicle" then pumps drugs directly into cancer cells to disable them, but leaves normal tissue alone.
They say their study, published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, is a proof of principle, conducted in mice, that shows this kind of strategy could be promising when developed for human use. "This is the most effective homing strategy seen to date, much better than any viral delivery strategy tested so far," says Michael Andreeff, M.D., Ph.D., professor in the Departments of Blood and Marrow Transplantation and Leukemia. "It is remarkable that these cells can find tumors wherever they are and become part of them."
The new approach uses human mesenchymal stem cells (MSC), the bodys natural tissue regenerators. Tissue that is injured sends signals to these unspecialized, progenitor cells, and they, in turn, migrate to the damage and morph into whatever kind of tissue - bone, fat, muscle, cartilage, tendons - is needed to repair the wound. Tumors, however, are "never-healing wounds" that also signal these stem cells, and then use them to help build up "stromal," or connective tissue, that structurally supports and nurtures tumor growth, says Andreeff. "Tumors constantly remodel their architecture with the help of these special stem cells."
Heather Sessions | EurekAlert!
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Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.
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Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.
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