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Nanotech Delivery, Cellular Heating Against Ovarian Cancer

By staff

US Pharm. 2013;38(11)(Oncol. suppl):S-14.

The combination of heat, chemotherapeutic drugs, and an innovative delivery system based on nanotechnology may significantly improve the treatment of ovarian cancer while reducing side effects from toxic drugs, researchers at Oregon State University (OSU) say in a new study. The laboratory findings show that a combination of mild hyperthermia and chemotherapy can kill 95% of ovarian cancer cells, and scientists say they expect to improve on those results in continued research.

“Ovarian cancer is rarely detected early, and because of that chemotherapy is often needed in addition to surgery,” said Oleh Taratula, an assistant professor in the OSU College of Pharmacy. “It’s essential for the chemotherapy to be as effective as possible the first time it’s used, and we believe this new approach should help with that.”

It is known that elevated temperatures can help kill cancer cells, but heating just the cancer cells is problematic. The new system incorporates the use of iron oxide nanoparticles that can be coated with a cancer-killing drug and then heated once they are inside the cancer cell.
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