Corn-derived nanoparticles show promise in treating mouse tumors

The application of food-based nanoparticles in the treatment of cancer and in several other therapeutic areas continues to generate exceptional results, notably in the use by Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna of lipid nanoparticles in the development of their COVID-19 vaccines. 19 respectively. Unfortunately, the prospect of large-scale therapeutic production has been hampered by the expense and complexity associated with manufacturing nanoparticles. A team of researchers from Tokyo University of Science have harnessed a food that is no stranger to mass production, in both native and genetically modified forms, to solve the problem.

These corn-derived nanoparticles (cNPs), which have been shown to attenuate tumor growth in mice, indicate that entirely new cancer treatments may soon find their way into healthcare systems. The researchers centrifuged a homogeneous mixture of sweet corn to filter out nanoparticles from 1 to 100 nanometers. Colon26 tumor cells, NIH3T3 cells, and RAW264.7 macrophage-like cells were among those that generated auspicious results in responding to the nanoparticles. Proving that cNPs discriminate against carcinogenic cell lines, they were able to prevent the growth of colon cells26. Additionally, they triggered the release of tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha), an inflammatory cytokine secreted by macrophages.

Combining with RAW264.7 cells, Tokyo University of Science nanoparticles also “significantly suppressed” colon26 cell diffusion. They slowed tumor growth in mice by direct injection into colon tumors26 without causing serious side effects such as rapid weight loss.

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