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Nano-targeting treatment for prostate cancer


Public Release: 13-Nov-2017

Nano-targeting treatment for prostate cancer

Novel delivery system targets cancerous bone lesions

American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists

Metastatic or castrate-resistant prostate cancer can spread to the bone in certain patients. While several new treatments are available, they can have a difficult time reaching the bone and can result in missing the metastatic lesions. New research presented today at the 2017 American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists (AAPS) Annual Meeting and Exposition seeks to address this challenge with the development of a bone-targeted nanoparticle (NP) that delivers the chemotherapy drug cabazitaxel directly to the bone.

Jamboor K Vishwanatha, Ph.D. and his team from University of North Texas Health Science Center engineered the NP formulation to bind to the chemical structure of the bone and were effective at reducing tumor size, maintaining bone structure, and decreasing pain. In the study, "Efficient Bone Microenvironment Nano-targeting for Improved Therapy for Bone Metastatic Prostate Cancer," bone tumors were established for one week in mice (starting n=6 per group) then treated weekly with either saline, free cabazitaxel, non-targeted NPs, or targeted NPs.

"A significant and troubling issue for prostate cancer patients is when the cancer spreads to the bone, resulting in difficult-to-treat and painful lesions," said the study's primary author Andrew Gdowski, D.O. "A key focus for our research was to reduce tumor size and pain."

The targeted NPs had a strong burst release of cabazitaxel within the first 8 hours and sustained release of up to 72 hours. The targeted NPs also had a fourfold increase in binding to bone at six hours and an eightfold increase at 72 hours when compared to the non-targeted NPs. Mice (n=6) treated with targeted NPs had no bone lesions on x-ray, with 100 percent in the saline and cabazitaxel groups and 33 percent in the non-targeted NP group with bone lesions.

Vishwanatha and his team also demonstrated a reduction in pain for the targeted NP group. In the von Frey assay, (indicate functional pain status in these mice) the group treated with targeted NPs had a significant reduction in relative response indicating they were experiencing less pain.

Lead team member Amalendu Ranjan, Ph.D. noted, "What is exciting is not only that these targeted nanoparticles work well to decrease tumor size but that we were able to maintain the bone structure and reduce pain, which is an ongoing challenge when treating these patients."

The next stage of the research will be to perform additional pre-clinical validation studies and work on streamlining the production method for large-scale NP production.


Efficient Bone Microenvironment Nano-targeting for Improved Therapy for Bone Metastatic Prostate Cancer will be presented Monday, Nov. 13, 1:00 p.m.- 2:00 p.m. (PST), Poster Forum 2 in the San Diego Convention Center.

The 2017 AAPS Annual Meeting and Exposition is taking place in San Diego November 12 - 15. It will bring together more than 6,000 scientists, business leaders, government officials, and students from around the world to share and learn the latest scientific advances and industry developments. The meeting will feature 100 scientific sessions and 2,200 posters, workshops, and short courses. Download the AAPS mobile application for additional information.

About AAPS: The American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists (AAPS) is a professional, scientific organization of approximately 9,000 members employed in academia, industry, government, and other research institutes worldwide. Founded in 1986, AAPS advances the capacity of pharmaceutical scientists to develop products and therapies that improve global health. Visit aaps.org and follow us on Facebook and Twitter @AAPSComms. The official Twitter hashtag for the meeting is: #AAPS2017.

Disclaimer: AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of news releases posted to EurekAlert! by contributing institutions or for the use of any information through the EurekAlert system.

6 Replies

Nano, is being used everywhere in research now--I reported on the nano Olaparib PARP inhibitor, being much more effective than the regular Olaparib---against BRCA-2 Gene Mutated Pca. Many other drugs are now being looked at, for nanotization---it seems the smaller we go the more effective the drugs become--there will be lots coming down the pike IMO.


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Yes, Nalakrats, thanks to you, this is why I was searching for the nanoformulation of Olaparib. I still haven't found where to get it. Our Dr. is working on getting the Olaparib approved for my husband, but it appears they don't know about the NanoOlaparib, which surprised me. You mentioned Dana Farber, but I couldn't find it (NanoOlaparib).

Also, I read Olaparib is much more effective when delivered directly vs. in pill form. Can't find any human studies, but here it is:

Nanoformulation of Olaparib Amplifies PARP Inhibition and Sensitizes PTEN/TP53-Deficient Prostate Cancer to Radiation


"In animals, twice-weekly intravenous administration of NanoOlaparib results in significant tumor growth inhibition, whereas previous studies of oral olaparib as monotherapy have shown no therapeutic efficacy. When NanoOlaparib is administered prior to radiation, a single dose of radiation is sufficient to triple the median mouse survival time compared to radiation only controls. Half of mice treated with NanoOlaparib + radiation achieved a complete response over the 13-week study duration. "


I believe you have to contact clinical Trials at Dana Farber-----they were the ones that presented their work in a paper. The key in thee cases---is to go from Cancer Research, Prostate Cancer Research, Clinical Trials, or get the head of Oncology at Dana Farber on the Phone---this result they report had to have him/her involved.

Another source is Foundation One--also headquartered in Mass. If you can get a Dr. McGregor--I think that is her last name, on the phone---as she is a Geneticist--who has been involved in Olaparib. They have an 800 Number---and If I got the name wrong--the Advocate answering the phone can direct you, or give you access, to voice or email. Sometimes it takes her 2 days to respond.

All I know!


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Thank you!!!



did you manage to get info on this, either contact names or actual responses? I'm looking at the same for my BRCA2.


No luck yet and I haven't had a chance to try further. Sorry. I will post when I find anything out, and please let us know if you're able to get more info.

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