AUG 17, 2019 8:44 AM PDT

New method to stop metastasis in lymph nodes

Research reported recently in ACS Nano explains a new method of targeting metastases in lymph nodes as a means of preventing the spread of cancers. The approach could provide novel treatment methods for patients vulnerable to metastasis, the process during which cancer cells separate from the primary tumor to form tumors at other sites. Metastasis is leading cause of cancer deaths.

This strategy targets lymph nodes because metastatic cancer usually spreads first to these glands through small vessels called lymphatics, which carry immune cells and fluid. While most conventional treatment options utilize biopsies of the lymph nodes to see if metastasis has occurred, taking a biopsy is an invasive procedure that can cause pain and infection. Instead of biopsies, the method developed by researchers Hong-Jun Li, Jin-Zhi Du and colleagues uses a nanoparticle delivery tool, called iCluster.

iCluster is already used as a nanoparticle delivery tool to bring chemotherapies directly to tumors, but by injecting iCluster combined with a red dye into mice with tumors, the researchers figured out that iCluster is also capable of entering a tumor and passing through the lymphatics. Using fluorescent imaging, the scientists saw that this mechanism provides a channel to target the lymph nodes directly and potentially treat metastases.

The study concluded that 40% of the treated mice treated with iCluster were still alive 110 days following the removal of the tumor; in comparison, those mice that did not receive treatment from iCluster before the removal of tumors all died from metastases within 51 days of surgery. Additionally, while the iCluster-treated mice lived longer, they also were seen to have far fewer tumors than untreated mice.

The authors explain their findings, stating, “Here, we uncovered that improved perfusion in a primary tumor facilitates nanoparticle translocation to lymph nodes for inhibiting tumor metastasis. On the basis of our finding that an iCluster platform…markedly improved particle perfusion in the interstitium of the primary tumor, we further revealed in the current study that such tumor-specific size transition promoted particle intravasation into tumor lymphatics and migration into lymph nodes.”

Sources: Science Daily, ACS Nano

About the Author
  • Kathryn is a curious world-traveller interested in the intersection between nature, culture, history, and people. She has worked for environmental education non-profits and is a Spanish/English interpreter.
You May Also Like
OCT 13, 2020
Immunology
Early Tips For Cell & Gene Therapy Regulatory Compliance
OCT 13, 2020
Early Tips For Cell & Gene Therapy Regulatory Compliance
Cell and gene therapies hold great promise for improved health outcomes. Now is the time to advance life-saving research ...
OCT 14, 2020
Cancer
Research suggests statins could reduce the risk of cancer
OCT 14, 2020
Research suggests statins could reduce the risk of cancer
New research published in the journal eLife provides evidence that statins, the common cholesterol-lowering drugs, could ...
NOV 05, 2020
Cancer
New insights on pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma
NOV 05, 2020
New insights on pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma
New research published this week in Cell from scientists at NYU Grossman School of Medicine, the Department of Radi ...
NOV 06, 2020
Drug Discovery & Development
Anti-depressant Shows Promise in Treating Childhood Cancer
NOV 06, 2020
Anti-depressant Shows Promise in Treating Childhood Cancer
Researchers from Sweden and the US have found that a commonly prescribed antidepressant may help stop the growth of a ca ...
NOV 09, 2020
Genetics & Genomics
Potential Problems with Liquid Biopsies
NOV 09, 2020
Potential Problems with Liquid Biopsies
Liquid biopsies are tests that look for biomarkers in the blood, which can help inform the treatment of cancer. The tool ...
NOV 17, 2020
Clinical & Molecular DX
Tumor Stiffness Linked to Its Aggressiveness
NOV 17, 2020
Tumor Stiffness Linked to Its Aggressiveness
  As tumors grow, tiny areas at their cores are found to become stiff prior to metastasis, or the spread of cancer ...
Loading Comments...