The nano-sized (10-9 metre) carbon materials have been extracted from the leaves of the rosy periwinkle plant.
New Delhi: Researchers at the IIT, Roorkee, have developed fluorescent carbon nanodots for simultaneous detection and destruction of cancer cells.
The nano-sized (10-9 metre) carbon materials, which can serve as therapeutic and diagnostic agents for cancer, have been extracted from the leaves of the rosy periwinkle plant. The work, supported by the Science and Engineering Research Board (SERB) and department of biotechnology (DBT) of the government of India, has recently been published in “Colloids and Surfaces B: Biointerfaces.”
“Such events of real-time image guided anticancer therapy by a single system open a new paradigm in the field of anticancer therapy. With these nanomaterials we can identify the cancer cells and track them by an imaging system simultaneously as the cells themselves are being eradicated in a precise surgical strike,” said Dr P. Gopinath, who led the team. He claimed that his team is now planning next stage animal studies for further evaluation of these nanomaterials in oncological applications, for both diagnostics and treatment.
According to Dr Gopinath, the identification of cancer cells and their inhibition/destruction have been continuous challenges in the field of oncology and cancer drug research for many decades.
“In the past few years, nanotechnology has emerged as one of the most promising areas in cancer diagnostics and treatment and nanomaterials — materials having dimensions in the nanometre (10-9m) range — are being increasingly studied as agents in molecular tumour imaging, molecular diagnosis, and targeted therapy,” he said.
Dr Gopinath’s team has synthesised carbon nanodots by heating the leaves of Catharanthus roseus, commonly called rosy periwinkle, and Vinca rosea in a process called “hydrothermal reaction.”