Feature article

Hybrid Nanoparticles Reassemble on Cancer Cells and Glow to Point Their Location

At the University of Southern California researchers have developed a hybrid nanoprobe for spotting the presence of live cancer cells by amplifying a chemical biomarker often found on cell's surface.

The team's nanoprobe comes together when two gold nanoparticles, each containing one half of a fluorescent protein and that hone in on tumors, meet on the surface of cancer cells. The fluorescent protein reassembles and becomes active when illuminated by a laser, allowing Raman spectroscopy to be used to spot it. Additionally, because the laser energizes the nanoprobes to resonate, ultrasound can also be used to confirm the location of the signal. Moreover, because resonance of the nanoparticles causes localized heat generation, the researchers will next be looking at using this technique to kill the cancer cells as well.

If things go as hoped, the new technology may provide a comprehensive theranostic approach for identifying, localizing, and ablating tumors via a minimally invasive approach using injected nanoparticles and endoscopic devices.

Study in Nature Communications: Cellular imaging by targeted assembly of hot-spot SERS and photoacoustic nanoprobes using split-fluorescent protein scaffolds…

Via: USC Dornsife…



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