MAGNOTHER project aims in the development of a novel nanoparticle fluid oriented for localized cancer therapy by the combination of magnetic hyperthermia treatment and thermally-triggered drug delivery. For its realization, a facile and scalable method of preparation will be designed to establish accurate control of synthetic parameters and a significant cost reduction compared to commercially available competitors. The ultimate product of this methodology combines a number of advantages with significant importance in cancer research including magnetic targeting of tissues, high heating efficiency (~1 kW/g), on-site heat-assisted release of drugs, low toxicity and favorable cell internalization.
The project is financially supported by Stavros Niarchos Foundation.
The outcome of this project will be a fully inorganic nanocomposite consisting of a magnetic carrier combined with a layered phase able to store quantities of anticancer drugs. The motivation for developing such system arises from the need for a product that not only beneficiary combines two synergistic methods for cancer treatment (MPH, chemotherapy) but each one individually contributes with its optimum efficiency. The product will be available as a stable colloid solution at physiological pH loaded with various anticancer agents on demand.
In the recent years, magnetic particle hyperthermia (MPH) is regarded among the most promising and least invasive strategies for cancer treatment schemes. It is based on the local heat release generated by magnetic nanoparticles under the application of a radio frequency AC magnetic field. Due to the high impact of MPH in targeted areas and its application in synergy with other therapies, the method has been intensively studied by research having reached clinical trials.
Still, a number of issues need to be addressed prior to its wide implementation in cancer treatment protocols. Most of them deal with the low heating power of many studied nanoparticles, their toxicity and the extremely high cost of commercial products specialized for other biomedical uses (e.g. MRI agents).
The demand for nanoparticles in biomedical applications is rapidly increasing with the market showing an annual growth rate of 20 %. Moreover, the targeted segment of nanomaterials, specialized for MPH agents, is practically unexploited though an increasing number of customers from the biomedicine sector are seeking for magnetic nanoparticles with reliable properties to cover their field studies. However, extremely high prices of competitive products, usually consisting of small dispersions volumes of iron oxide nanoparticles, constrains continuation of intense research. Its success to fulfil these requirements enables an optimistic perspective for possible commercialization of the developed product.
Τhe innovation of the product is not only limited to the particle architecture but spreads out to the designed production process which contributes to the significant reduction of cost at accessible levels supporting continuation of corresponding research and clinical trials. The multi-stage continuous flow setup represents a simple and proportionally scalable production line using low-cost chemical reagents (excluding cost for anticancer agents), mild reaction conditions and minimum energy consumption. The process is fully environmental friendly since a 100 % conversion of reagents to solid occurs and no toxic byproducts are produced.
Main advantages of the product
Drug loading on demand
High heating rate
Field-controlled magneto-/chemo- therapy