UT Arlington physicist creates new nanoparticle for cancer therapy
(Press-News.org) A University of Texas at Arlington physicist working to create a luminescent nanoparticle to use in security-related radiation detection may have instead happened upon an advance in photodynamic cancer therapy. Wei Chen, professor of physics and co-director of UT Arlington's Center for Security Advances Via Applied Nanotechnology, was testing a copper-cysteamine complex created in his lab when he discovered unexplained decreases in its luminescence, or light emitting power, over a time-lapse exposure to X-rays. Looking further, he found that the nanoparticles, called Cu-Cy, were losing energy as they emitted singlet oxygen – a toxic byproduct that is used to damage cancer cells in photodynamic therapy. Because Chen also is leading federally funded cancer research, he knew he had found something unique. Testing revealed that the Cu-Cy nanoparticles, combined with X-ray exposure, significantly slowed tumor growth in lab studies. "This new idea is simpler and better than previous photodynamic therapy methods. You don't need as many steps. This material alone can do the job," Chen said. "It is the most promising thing we have found in these cancer studies and we've been looking at this for a long time." Chen's research is being published in the August edition of the Journal of Biomedical Nanotechnology under the title "A New X-Ray Activated Nanoparticle Photosensitizer for Cancer Treatment." Co-authors are Lun Ma, a research assistant professor, and Xiaoju Zou, a research associate. The paper is available online at http://www.aspbs.com/JBN/contents_jbn2014108.htm. The University has also filed a provisional patent application on the new complex. Photodynamic therapy, or PDT, harms cancer cells when a photosensitizer introduced into tumor tissue produces toxic singlet oxygen after being exposed to light. In some studies, this light exposure is done through use of visible or near-infrared lasers. Others have found more success by also introducing luminescent nanoparticles into the tumor. Researchers activate the luminescent nanoparticle with near-infrared light or X-rays, which in turn activates the photosensitizer. Both methods have limitations for treating deep tissue cancers. They are either inefficient or the light source needed to activate them doesn't penetrate deep enough. Chen said that X-ray inducible Cu-Cy particles surpass current photosensitizers because the X-rays can penetrate deep into tissue. Also, Cu-Cy nanoparticles don't need other photosensitizes to be effective so the treatment is more convenient, efficient and cost-effective. "Dr. Chen's commitment to his work in cancer-related therapy, as well as his work in the area of homeland security, demonstrates the wide-ranging applications and great value of basic science research," said Carolyn Cason, vice president for research at UT Arlington. "These advances have the potential to change the way some cancers are treated and make therapy more effective – a benefit that would be boundless." Chen's team tested the Cu-Cy on human breast and prostate cancer cells in the lab and found it to be an effective treatment when combined with X-ray exposure. In one test, for example, a tumor treated with Cu-Cy injection and X-ray exposure stayed virtually the same size over a 13-day period while a tumor without the full treatment grew by three times. Another advantage of the new nanoparticle is a low toxicity to healthy cells. In addition, Cu-Cy's intense photoluminescence and X-ray luminescence can be used for cell imaging, the paper said. Details of the crystal structure and optical properties of the new complex are being published in an upcoming paper from the Journal of Materials Chemistry. It is available here: http://pubs.rsc.org/en/content/articlepdf/2014/tc/c4tc00114a. Chen continues to pursue photodynamic cancer therapy research under a grant from the Department of Defense Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs and with collaborations from industry. He said further research would include reducing the size of the Cu-Cy nanoparticle to make it more easily absorbed in the tumor tissue. "For cancer, there is still no good solution yet. Hopefully this nanoparticle can provide some possibilities," he said. INFORMATION: About UT Arlington The University of Texas at Arlington is a comprehensive research institution and the second largest institution in The University of Texas System. The Chronicle of Higher Education ranked UT Arlington as the seventh fastest-growing public research university in 2013. U.S. News & World Report ranks UT Arlington fifth in the nation for undergraduate diversity. Visit http://www.uta.edu to learn more.
ELSE PRESS RELEASES FROM THIS DATE:
Using video surveillance to measure peoples' hand washing habits
One of the best defenses against infectious disease is one of the most simple – hand washing. Still, despite years of global public awareness campaigns, hand washing rates remain low. Caregivers of young children in low-income, developing world settings are found to wash their hands only 17 percent of the time after using the toilet. A new study finds that video surveillance can provide insights into hand washing behavior. When another person is present, for example, hand washing rates increase 23 percent. These findings could, in turn, inform the design, monitoring ...
Irrigated agriculture -- precious habitat for the long-billed curlew
Petaluma, CA – Despite the recent rainfall, California is still in a drought, so not only are water supplies limited, but demand for water is increasing from a variety of uses. In a recent study published by Point Blue Conservation Science (Point Blue) and Audubon California in the journal Western Birds, scientists document the importance of irrigated agricultural crops in California's Central Valley to a conspicuous shorebird. Crops like alfalfa provide critical habitat for the Long-billed Curlew, the largest shorebird in North America and a species of continental conservation ...
Body Mass Index associated with breast cancer, regardless of body shape
ATLANTA – April 16, 2014— A study of predominantly white women finds a larger waist circumference is associated with higher risk of postmenopausal breast cancer, but not beyond its contribution to BMI. The study, by American Cancer Society researchers, fails to confirm previous findings that body shape itself is an independent risk factor for breast cancer. The current study appears in the April 2014 issue of Cancer Causes, and Control. A significant body of research has linked abdominal obesity to a number of conditions, including heart disease, type II diabetes, and ...
A study in scarlet
This area of the southern sky, in the constellation of Centaurus (The Centaur), is home to many bright nebulae, each associated with hot newborn stars that formed out of the clouds of hydrogen gas. The intense radiation from the stellar newborns excites the remaining hydrogen around them, making the gas glow in the distinctive shade of red typical of star-forming regions. Another famous example of this phenomenon is the Lagoon Nebula (eso0936 - http://www.eso.org/public/news/eso0936/), a vast cloud that glows in similar bright shades of scarlet. The nebula in this picture ...
Warm US West, cold East: A 4,000-year pattern
SALT LAKE CITY, April 16, 2014 – Last winter's curvy jet stream pattern brought mild temperatures to western North America and harsh cold to the East. A University of Utah-led study shows that pattern became more pronounced 4,000 years ago, and suggests it may worsen as Earth's climate warms. "If this trend continues, it could contribute to more extreme winter weather events in North America, as experienced this year with warm conditions in California and Alaska and intrusion of cold Arctic air across the eastern USA," says geochemist Gabe Bowen, senior author of the ...
Scientists achieve first direct observations of excitons in motion
A quasiparticle called an exciton — responsible for the transfer of energy within devices such as solar cells, LEDs, and semiconductor circuits — has been understood theoretically for decades. But exciton movement within materials has never been directly observed. Now scientists at MIT and the City College of New York have achieved that feat, imaging excitons' motions directly. This could enable research leading to significant advances in electronics, they say, as well as a better understanding of natural energy-transfer processes, such as photosynthesis. The research ...
Wind Over Water Jewelry Project Launch on Indiegogo: Fashion-forward, Baby-friendly and Socially Minded Jewelry Designs For Moms
Wind Over Water Jewelry designs are exclusively through the Indiegogo Campaign. Providing fashion-forward, baby-friendly and socially-minded jewelry options to mothers. FASHION FORWARD - an upgrade to any outfit plus unique asymmetrical designs always allow mom to remember on what side she last nursed BABY FRIENDLY - materials that are non-toxic plus something that perks baby's interest SOCIALLY MINDED - a partnership that helps impoverished women now plus creates a new future through access to education. That's a lot for a necklace! Fashion-Forward Jewelry Our ...
Richmond Family Dentistry Wins Consecutive Talk of the Town Awards
For the third straight year, Richmond Family Dentistry has received the prestigious Talk of the Town Customer Satisfaction Award in the Health & Medical -- Dentists. Cheryl Billingsley, DDS, MAGD, ND, and the team at Richmond Family Dentistry were honored with the award after earning the highest possible customer satisfaction rating of 5 stars. The Talk of the Town Awards, presented by Talk of the Town News, honor companies and professionals that provide excellent customer service as reported by their customers through no-cost, user-review websites, blogs, social ...
Florida Matchmaker "Raises the Bar" to help Singles Find Love
Kelly Leary isn't "your grandmother's matchmaker." In fact, she's brought this ancient talent that goes back thousands of years into the 21st century with her new company, Revolution Dating. "Since the advent of the internet, dating has gotten way more complicated than it ever was," said Leary, who has been a fixture on the matchmaking scene in South Florida and the Treasure Coast for 23 years. "While on the one hand there are more choices than ever, on the other hand you have no idea who you're meeting. Plus, most people don't have the kind of time to waste that internet ...
UNIFOSA Debuts latest 12Gb/s SAS JBOD
UNIFOSA CORP. launched the 2U 24Bays 12Gb/s SAS JBOD, EP-2246J/JD-SCSC, which offers high density storage, hardware redundancy and easily integrates into versatile applications that request high performance and high scalability. The EP-2246J/JD-SCSC accommodates the latest SAS 3.0 12Gb/s interface which boost up the throughput up to 4,800MB/s per host. Based on this powerful performance, EP-2246J/JD-SCSC can efficiently meet demands for intensive data access applications, virtualization and Windows Server 2012 installation, and video edition related applications. The ...