Magic bullet technique

A multifunctional system based on a hybrid inorganic/organic nano-carrier, superficially decorated with specific targeting moieties (monoclonal antibodies and/or protein-based units for cellular recognition) and loaded with specific anticancer drugs was developed by our group.


This system envisages an innovative treatment of several diseases based on the self-accumulation of the nano-carrier onto the target site of different solid tumors thanks to the specific recognition between antibodies (carried by the nano-carrier) and tumoral markers.


It has been proved that magnetite and nanorods-based nanosystems can heat if exposed respectively to an alternating electromagnetic field in the radio wave range (100 – 500 kHz) or to a laser source (800 – 1000 nm), causing the so called hyperthermia phenomenon, responsible for cellular apoptosis. Hyperthermia will also trigger the release of chemotherapeutic agents loaded in the nanostructure that will act in synergy with temperature increase for malignant cells destruction. Imaging techniques as MRI, NIR fluorescent microscopy and photoacoustic may be also employed simultaneously for nano-carrier detection.

In the picture below the “perfect magic bullet” is shown.

According to the above described method, our group has efficiently assessed the preparation of nanosized injectable products for the treatment of pancreatic, head-neck and prostatic cancers. Promising results were recorded in vitro and in vivo.