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Molecule Helps Nanoparticles Sneak Past the Immune System

Thu, 02/21/2013 - 5:11pm
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Taking a cue from nature, researchers have designed nanoparticles that can avoid being destroyed by the immune system by convincing immune cells that the particles are part of the body. The advance represents a fundamentally new way to address a major obstacle facing nanoparticle-based drug delivery.

Nanoparticles are attractive for use in targeted drug delivery and imaging, but the immune system’s innate response to foreign particles is an impediment to the advancement of many nanoparticle-based drugs and imaging techniques.

 

Now, in a paper published today in Science, researchers describe nanoparticles designed not to hide from immune cells, but to engage them in order to secure passage through the body.

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