Tumour targeting nanotechnology has recently made therapeutic progress and several therapeutic nanoparticles have been approved for clinical application. However, an ideal nanotechnology based therapeutic for solid tumours, particularly for systemic administration, still remains a challenge in clinical cancer therapy. Wepreviously reported a pHsensitive in vivo delivery system of doxorubicin, or microRNA, using carbonate apatite (CA) nanoparticles. To further explore utility of CA in cancer therapy, we attempted to transport excess glucose into tumour cells by conjugating glucose (Glc) to the nanoparticle. Despite the non-toxicity of CA and Glc, the complex (CA-[Glc]) exhibited an unexpected anti-cancer effect in vitro and in vivo. CA-[Glc] significantly reduced the growth of colon cancer cell lines. Intravenous injections successfully suppressed solid tumour growth. In mice and monkeys, intravenously injected CA-[Glc] complex resulted in no serious abnormalities in body weight or blood chemistry. Because cancer cells intensively metabolise glucose than normal cells, treatment of cancer using glucose seems paradoxical. However, with the aid of CA, this safe and 'sweet' complex may be a novel anti-cancer reagent.
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