Implementation of Nanotechnology as Tool for Preventing Cancer
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Publication date: 2019-04-03
Eurasian J Anal Chem 2018;13(6):emEJAC181247
Despite improvements in our understanding of pancreatic cancer and the emerging concept of personalized medicine for the treatment of this disease, it is still the fourth most common cause of cancer death in the western world. It is established that pancreatic cancer is a highly heterogeneous disease with a complex tumor microenvironment. Indeed the extensive stoma surrounding the cancer cells has been shown to be important in promoting tumor growth and metastases, as well as sequestering chemotherapeutic agents consequently decreasing delivery to the tumor cells. Nanotechnology has come to the forefront in the areas of medical diagnostics, imaging, and therapeutic drug delivery. This review will focus on the potential applications of nanotechnology for diagnosis, imaging, and delivery of therapeutic agents for the treatment of pancreatic cancer. The design and synthesis of nano-particles which can encapsulate and deliver a diverse range of therapeutic compounds—ranging from chemotherapy agents to DNA/RNA has received significant attention in cancer research. Nano-particles in the form of liposome's and/or polymer-derived nano-materials have been widely used in a number of pre-clinical cancer models. Importantly, these nano-particles have shown great potential as highly efficient delivery vehicles for chemotherapy drugs or RNA interference (RNAi) inhibitors and are currently being evaluated in human clinical trial. A select number of examples for the use of nano-particles to deliver chemotherapy agents or RNAi inhibitors are described in the following sections.