Cells prefer stripes

  May 26, June 2, 2008
Artificial nanoparticles that can enter living cells are useful for delivering drugs, diagnosing diseases and studying biology. Early models have tended to either damage cells or fail to reach cell interiors. Nanoparticles coated with alternating stripes of negatively-charged and hydrophobic molecules pass safely through cell membranes to cell interiors.

The striping method could play a role in developing targeted drugs and medical imaging techniques.

Research paper:
Surface-Structure-Regulated Cell-Membrane Penetration by Monolayer-Protected Nanoparticles
Nature Materials, published online May 25, 2008

Researchers' homepages:
Irvine Group
Supramolecular Nano Materials Group

Related stories and briefs:
Off-the-shelf nanoparticles (library of drug-delivery nanoparticles)

Back to TRN May 26, June 2, 2008

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