New Drug Loaded into Nanoparticle Kills Cells in Aggressive Breast Cancer, U.K. Study Shows

New Drug Loaded into Nanoparticle Kills Cells in Aggressive Breast Cancer, U.K. Study Shows
Researchers in Great Britain have developed a potential new drug to target highly aggressive "triple negative" breast cancer (TNBC) — as well as a biodegradable nanoparticle to deliver it directly into cancer cells, killing them upon release. Their study, “Nano-encapsulation of a novel anti-Ran-GTPase peptide for blockade of regulator of chromosome condensation 1 (RCC1) function in MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cells,” appeared in the International Journal of Pharmaceutics. The drug was designed as a peptide to specifically target RAN protein. RAN is highly expressed in aggressive breast cancers, and is linked with aggressive tumor growth, cancer spread and resistance to chemotherapy in TNBC. Yet sustaining an efficient delivery of the anti-RAN peptides was still an inefficient process. "We knew we'd need a novel delivery mechanism for this drug, because peptides on their own are unstable and they can degrade too quickly to be effective," study author Mohamed El-Tanani of the University of Bradford's Institute for Cancer Therapeutics explained in a press release. "Using a nanoparticle as a delivery mechanism was the perfect solution." Together with colleagues at Ulster University, Sunderland and Queen's University Belfast, scientists confirmed that TNBC cells were actually absorbing the peptide-loaded nanoparticles. Afterward, these cells stopped growing and dividing. Two-thirds of the cancer cells were dead within 24 hours, which didn't happen when cells received the peptide alone or an empty nanoparticle. Scientists confirmed that the peptide
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