Laser-activated NanoPDT nanoparticles validated for brain cancer treatment in preclinical trial

APRIL 6, 2009--An independent preclinical study has validated the applicability of Nanobiotix's (Paris, France) nanoPDT nanoparticles to treat glioblastoma multiforme, one of the most prevalent forms of malignant brain tumor, and according to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center (Los Angeles, CA), the most aggressive. The name nanoPDT derives from the terms nanotechnology and photodynamic therapy (PDT). Nanobiotix's nano-scale particles allow for the controlled generation of physical reactions in cancer cells when triggered by the application of laser energy.

Cancéropôle Lyon Auvergne Rhône-Alpes (CLARA), an international network of researchers and companies working to fight cancer, co-funded the proof-of-concept preclinical study along with Nanobiotix. The research was conducted by the French National Institute for Health and Medical Research (INSERM, Paris, France) under principal investigator and neuro-oncologist Prof. and Med. dr. Jérôme Honnorat.

The nanotechnology-based approach enables the precise destruction of cancer cells via the controlled application of a laser beam, explained Laurent Lévy, Ph.D., president and CEO of Nanobiotix and co-president of the French Technology Platform on Nanotechnology (FTPN).

"Of course, there is much more work to be done, but we are extremely encouraged by these preclinical findings, which dramatically demonstrate the therapeutic effect of nanoparticles on glioblastoma and open the possibility of a new weapon with which neuro-oncologists might fight this difficult-to-treat tumor," Levy said.

"This may have significant ramifications for cancer therapy in the not-too-distant future," added Paras N. Prasad, Ph.D., one of the world's leading authorities on nanotechnology and one of the inventors of the Nanobiotix technology. Dr. Prasad is a co-founder of Nanobiotix and Executive Director of the Institute for Lasers, Photonics and Biophotonics at SUNY (Buffalo).

Nanobiotix expects to attract corporate partners for the development of nanoPDT. The company is focusing now on development of nanoXray, a similar technology activated by X-ray energy.

For more information about Nanobiotix, see the company's website.

Posted by Barbara G. Goode, barbarag@pennwell.com, for BioOptics World.

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