Feb 2019: Detecting and targeting senescent cells using molecularly imprinted nanoparticles

Posted by he28 at Feb 20, 2019 01:40 PM |
Studies carried out by researchers at the University of Leicester supported by the Division of Biomedical Services led by Salvador Macip's research group.

We show that molecularly imprinted nanoparticles (nanoMIPs) can be designed to target surface proteins in senescent cells, using as epitopes newly described membrane proteins with extracellular domains that are specifically induced in this cells. This provides a novel tool to detect senescent cells (when the nanoMIPs are tagged with fluorescent probes) or destroy them (by loading the nanoparticles with the adequate drug, which will then be specifically released).

We show in this study that this is indeed possible in cells in culture, which can be highlighted or eliminated using a nanoMIP against B2M. Moreover, we also show that the nanoMIPs can detect senescent cells in aged mice without eliciting any apparent toxicity. Since senescent cells have recently been associated with different conditions and diseases, ranging from lung fibrosis to Alzheimer’s, cancer or ageing, we propose that these nanoparticles could be used for diagnostic and even therapeutic purposes

Please visit the Royal Society of Chemistry website for the full article.

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