May 25, 2006
X-ray imaging is a very mature, although not infallible, field of medicine, but it does not lend itself to the detection of small tumours or their metastases. Now, Sangeeta Bhatia in Boston, Massachusetts and colleagues at the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology hope to remedy that by using iron oxide nanoparticles to allow MRI to visualize areas of tumor invasion.
The key to their novel imaging agent is a tumour-specific protease, which is found, as the name would suggest, primarily in and around tumour cells. Bhatia and her team engineered a method by which iron(III) oxide nanoparticles could form aggregate clusters under physiological conditions.
Find out more about how Bhatia and her colleagues hope to exploit nanotechnology to improve medicine in my current news round-up on SpectroscopyNOW.com