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Cancer and robots are getting closer and closer. We can now engineer nano devices that taget specific cells and use revolutionary approach to detect and treat cancer. Join us for an amazing Pint of Science night!!
Thanks to advances in nanotechnology we can now engineer complex devices whose size is only a few hundred times of the same molecules that comprise them. When we apply this to medicine, we can make drugs equipped to find their way to their target. Selectivity means to minimise all the unwanted interactions with other parts of the body beside the diseased ones and hence minimal side effects. I will discuss how we do this and how we combine chemistry and physics with biology and physiology to create nano robots capable of navigating the body and selectively target the damaged parts to heal them.
Using sugar to see through Cancer metabolism
Rafat Chowdhury (PhD student)
A revolutionary approach to detect and treat cancer is represented by hyperpolarised MRI scan. The method being trialled at UCL uses Carbon 13 labelled Pyruvate (a sugar that is part of the glycosis cycle of normal cells) and a process of hyperpolarization. Imaging living systems with hyperpolarized agents can result in more than 10,000-fold enhancement in signal relative to conventional magnetic resonance (MR) imaging.This technique is a hallmark of cancer metabolism, non invasively characterising alterations in tumor metabolism.