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Volume 24, Number 5, 2019

Study of gold nanoparticles for mammography diagnostic and radiotherapy improvements

Lorenzo Torrisi, Nancy Restuccia, Alfio Torrisi

Summary:

Aim A study on the possibility to use gold nanoparticles in mammography, both for a better image diagnostics and radiotherapy, is presented and discussed. We evaluate quantitatively the increment of dose released to the tumor enriched with Au-NPs with respect to the near healthy tissues, finding that for X-rays the increase can reach two orders of greater intensity. Background Gold nanoparticles continue to be investigated for their potential to improve existing therapies and to develop novel therapies. They are simple to obtain, can be functionalized with different chemical approaches, are stable, non-toxic, non-immunogenic and have high permeability and retention effects in the tumor cells. The possibility to use these for breast calcified tumors to be better treated by radiotherapy is presented as a possible method to destroy the tumor. Materials and methods The nanoparticles can be generated in water using the top-down method, should have a size of the order of 10–20 nm and be treated to avoid their coalescence. Under diagnostic X-ray monitoring, the solution containing nanoparticles can be injected locally inside the tumor site avoiding injection in healthy tissues. The concentrations that can be used should be of the order of 10 mg/ml or higher. Results An enhancement of the computerized tomography diagnostics using 80–150 keV energy is expected, due to the higher mass X-ray coefficient attenuation with respect to other contrast media. Due to the increment of the effective atomic number of the biological tissue containing the gold nanoparticles, also an improvement of the radiotherapy effect using about 30 keV X-ray energy is expected, due to the higher photoelectric cross sections involved. Conclusions The study carried out represents a feasibility proposal for the use of Au-nanoparticles for mammographic molecular imaging aimed at radiotherapy of tumor nodules but no clinical results are presented.

Signature: Rep Pract Oncol Radiother, 2019; 24(5) : 450-457


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Indexed in: EMBASE®, the Excerpta Medica database, the Elsevier BIOBASE (Current Awareness in Biological Sciences) and in the Index Copernicus.

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/journal/15071367/19/2