By Cameron Chai
In a boost to localized disease treatment, research has yielded micro and nano-scale protein making machinery in capsule form, capable of manufacturing drugs inside the human body. The study was published in American Chemical Society’s (ACS) journal, Nano Letters. Proteins are the building blocks of drugs and integral to the human cell.
The researchers led by Daniel Anderson engineered a nanoparticle system containing DNA and other components necessary for protein synthesis. These capsules can be triggered to commence drug synthesis by means of an external signal.
The study paves the way for novel disease treatment of the human body by employing protein based drugs. The ability to manufacture drugs inside the body on need basis is extremely useful under circumstances where oral consumption of medicines is not possible and when medicines meant for specific treatment can harm other body parts. In the past, live bacterial systems have been introduced in the human body for protein synthesis at disease sites. But they are difficult to modify. The nanoscale manufacturing capsules on the other hand are convenient to modify and emulate the natural protein synthesizing mechanism in living cells. The researchers conducted successful experiments on mice by employing a laser beam as the external trigger.
The study is funded by the Life Sciences Research Foundation, the Misrock Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, the National Cancer Institute and the Marie D. & Pierre Casimir-Lambert Fund.