The new method, developed at the University of Warwick, uses two 'parent' nanoparticles that are designed to interact only when in proximity to each other and trigger the release of drug molecules contained within both. The release of the drug molecules from the 'parent' nanoparticles could subsequently form a third 'daughter' particle, which comprises molecules from both 'parent' nanoparticles.
"We conceive that in the blood stream the particles would not be able to interact sufficiently to lead to release, only when they are taken into cells would the release be able to happen," says Professor Dove. "In this way, the drug can be targeted to only release where we want it to and therefore be more effective and reduce side effects."
"The two 'parent' nanoparticles used in the new mechanism are cylindrical in shape and are made from polymer chains that differ only by the way in which Chemical-Bonds'>chemical bonds are directed within a part of the structure.
Published in journal Nature Communications the research, "Structural reorganisation of cylindrical nanoparticles triggered by polylactide stereocomplexation," could "raise new possibilities in how we can administer medical treatments," says Professor Dove. "We're planning to study this as a new treatment for cancer but the principle could potentially be applied to a wide range of diseases."
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