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Two-step nano cocktail targets tumors

Jan. 5, 2010 at 4:02 PM

SAN DIEGO, Jan. 5 (UPI) -- A cocktail of nano-sized particles introduced into the bloodstream shows promise in adhering to and killing cancerous tumors, scientists in San Diego say.

Scientists at the University of California-San Diego developed a system containing two nano materials, each one-thousandth the diameter of a human hair.

One nano material of iron oxide was designed to find and adhere to epithelial tumors in mice, while a second nano material -- the anti-cancer drug doxorubicin -- was fabricated to kill the tumors, biochemist Michael Sailor said in a release Monday.

"This study represents the first example of the benefits of employing a cooperative nano system to fight cancer," Michael Sailor said of the results, which were to be published in an upcoming issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.