It has been known that human cells release nanoparticles for a while. Now, researchers at the University of Sydney have figured how to identify these nanoparticles.
This research paves the way for doctors to use these nanoparticles as diagnostic tools that could lead to early detection for cancer, dementia, and kidney disease.
|Scientists unlock path to use cell’s own nanoparticles as disease biomarkers|
Researchers at the University of Sydney have established a method to identify individual nanoparticles released by human cells, opening the way for them to become diagnostic tools in the early-detection of cancers, dementia and kidney disease.
The particles, known as extracellular vesicles, or EVs, are routinely released by cells and play a central role in cell communication, sharing vital information such as DNA, RNA and proteins.
“This really is at the cutting edge of our knowledge of cellular development,” said Associate Professor Wojciech Chrzanowski, co-author of a new paper on EVs published in the Royal Society of Chemistry’s Nanoscale Horizons.
“EVs could not only be used to identify cellular pathologies but because they carry essential information about cell development, we could engineer them for purposes of tissue repair.”
Associate Professor Chrzanowski from the University of Sydney Nano Institute and the Faculty of Pharmacy said the ability to identify individual EVs will provide biomarkers for diverse diseases such as cancers, cardiovascular, kidney and liver disease as well as dementia and multiple sclerosis.
He said it will also allow scientists to engineer EVs for use in tissue regeneration and help start a new chapter in stem-cell therapies and regenerative medicine.
“The human body naturally directs EVs from stem cells to damaged tissue to assist in its repair. By harnessing this knowledge, we could create a new generation of cell therapies,” said Associate Professor Chrzanowski, who is the industry theme leader for Health and Medicine at Sydney Nano.