Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

New device could cut chemotherapy deaths

03.04.2006
A new method of delivering chemotherapy to cancer patients without incurring side effects such as hair loss and vomiting is being developed.

The method, produced at the University of Bath, involves using tiny fibres and beads soaked in the chemotherapy drug which are then implanted into the cancerous area in the patient’s body.

These fibres are bio-degradable and compatible with body tissue, which means they would not be rejected by the patient’s body. They gradually turn from solid to liquid, releasing a regular flow of the chemotherapy chemical into the cancer site, and a much lower dose to the rest of the body.

This is a more localised way of killing cancer cells than the current method of injecting the chemical into a cancer sufferer’s vein so that it is carried around the body.

As well as reducing the side-effects, the new drug delivery vehicle, known as Fibrasorb, could also cut the numbers of patients who die from the effects of chemotherapy because they need such high doses to tackle their cancer.

The method, developed by Dr Semali Perera, of the University’s Department of Chemical Engineering, over the past few years, has successfully gone through preliminary laboratory trials. The first clinical trials on volunteer patients with ovarian cancer in Avon, Somerset and Wiltshire could begin in the next few years and, if successful, the technology could be put into general use.

The research team at Bath is collaborating closely with the Avon, Somerset and Wiltshire Cancer Centre and the oncology team at the Royal United Hospital for the design and development of these drug delivery vehicles. This team includes Dr Ed Gilby, one of the most experienced consultant oncologists, surgeons Mr Nicholas Johnson and Mr Kenneth Jaaback, clinical trials experts and specialist nurses such as Tracie Miles.

“Side effects from chemotherapy can be very unpleasant and sometimes fatal,” said Dr Perera.

“The new fibres and beads could cut out some side-effects entirely, including nausea and vomiting, and could reduce the number of people who die each year.

“Although the first study will be on patients with ovarian cancer, soon we hope that other cancer sufferers with solid tumours will benefit.

“Give that around one in eight people worldwide die of cancer, this could be a vitally important step in the treatment of this disease.

“We have now assembled an extremely experienced team to develop the Fibrasorb technology."

The Fibrasorb technology is a flexible fully resorbable device that can be formulated as a bead, a fibre or mesh, or as a tube put into the body which leads outside the body and through which drugs can be fed.

For the pre-clinical studies, funded by the Department of Health, Dr Perera will be working closely with Dr Vasanta Subramanian, a lecturer in the University’s Department of Biology & Biochemistry. Dr Subramanian is a cell and molecular biologist with extensive research experience in gastrointestinal cancers and stem cells in the gastrointestinal tract.

Dr Perera has also been working with the University’s Department of Pharmacy & Pharmacology to make the fibres more sterile so they cannot be attacked by harmful bacteria.

Dr Perera said that other researchers had worked on using tiny beads as a way of delivering drugs locally, but the new system showed greater promise because it could achieve better control when delivering the drug.

A patent application has been filed on the drug delivery system, and drug companies across the world are expected to express great interest in the new technology.

Tony Trueman | alfa
Further information:
http://www.bath.ac.uk

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht More genes are active in high-performance maize
19.01.2018 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn

nachricht How plants see light
19.01.2018 | Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg im Breisgau

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Artificial agent designs quantum experiments

On the way to an intelligent laboratory, physicists from Innsbruck and Vienna present an artificial agent that autonomously designs quantum experiments. In initial experiments, the system has independently (re)discovered experimental techniques that are nowadays standard in modern quantum optical laboratories. This shows how machines could play a more creative role in research in the future.

We carry smartphones in our pockets, the streets are dotted with semi-autonomous cars, but in the research laboratory experiments are still being designed by...

Im Focus: Scientists decipher key principle behind reaction of metalloenzymes

So-called pre-distorted states accelerate photochemical reactions too

What enables electrons to be transferred swiftly, for example during photosynthesis? An interdisciplinary team of researchers has worked out the details of how...

Im Focus: The first precise measurement of a single molecule's effective charge

For the first time, scientists have precisely measured the effective electrical charge of a single molecule in solution. This fundamental insight of an SNSF Professor could also pave the way for future medical diagnostics.

Electrical charge is one of the key properties that allows molecules to interact. Life itself depends on this phenomenon: many biological processes involve...

Im Focus: Paradigm shift in Paris: Encouraging an holistic view of laser machining

At the JEC World Composite Show in Paris in March 2018, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will be focusing on the latest trends and innovations in laser machining of composites. Among other things, researchers at the booth shared with the Aachen Center for Integrative Lightweight Production (AZL) will demonstrate how lasers can be used for joining, structuring, cutting and drilling composite materials.

No other industry has attracted as much public attention to composite materials as the automotive industry, which along with the aerospace industry is a driver...

Im Focus: Room-temperature multiferroic thin films and their properties

Scientists at Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech) and Tohoku University have developed high-quality GFO epitaxial films and systematically investigated their ferroelectric and ferromagnetic properties. They also demonstrated the room-temperature magnetocapacitance effects of these GFO thin films.

Multiferroic materials show magnetically driven ferroelectricity. They are attracting increasing attention because of their fascinating properties such as...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

10th International Symposium: “Advanced Battery Power – Kraftwerk Batterie” Münster, 10-11 April 2018

08.01.2018 | Event News

See, understand and experience the work of the future

11.12.2017 | Event News

Innovative strategies to tackle parasitic worms

08.12.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Let the good tubes roll

19.01.2018 | Materials Sciences

How cancer metastasis happens: Researchers reveal a key mechanism

19.01.2018 | Health and Medicine

Meteoritic stardust unlocks timing of supernova dust formation

19.01.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>