The development of multifunctional systems with individual properties acting in a coordinated manner has been shown to be relevant in the search for methods of early diagnosis and more effective treatments. Systems based on gold nanoparticles has become known for their unique optical and electronic properties and the possibility of incorporating different compounds in a single system. Special attention has been given to multifunctional and/or theranostic nanomaterials. Recently, great interest has been observed to develop nanomaterials with high specificity to cancer cells to diagnostic and treatment, as well as low toxicity. This research project is motivated by the development of multifunctional nanoparticle liposome-transferrin that is few explored in the literature for diagnosis and treatment of cancer cells. Gold nanoparticles will be coated with liposomes such as DPPC and DPPG, followed by conjugation with the protein transferrin to confer greater selectivity to cancer cells. The multifunctional nanoparticles will be characterized by spectroscopic and microscopic techniques after each modification. For evaluation of specificity and toxicity, in vitro tests will be performed by incubating the multifunctional nanoparticles in healthy liver cell (FC3-H) and carcinogenic (HTC) ones. Then, tests of cell biology will be used to assess specificity. It is expected that the combination of nanomaterials and biomolecules significantly increase treatment efficacy and bioavailability in the biological system due to the enhanced permeability and retention effect that the nanomaterials.
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: