With the aim of lowering the consequences of chemotherapy on fit tissues, a group of scientists at the Center for Self-assembly and Complexity, from the IBS (Institute for Basic Science), have designed an innovative nano containers. These nano containers are capable of delivering anticancer drugs at exact location and timing. Posted in Angewandte Chemie International Edition, the research merges light-dependent drug as well as exclusively developed molecules, which might offer a fresh platform to improve the impact of anticancer therapeutics.
Due to a serendipitous surveillance, scientists of IBS at POSTECH discovered out that molecules akin to a shape of a tailed pumpkin, also dubbed as AO1CB (mono-allyloxylated cucurbituril), act as surfactant in water. The majority of surfactants, such as phospholipids in cellular membranes and soap molecules in bubbles, have long hydrophobic (fat-loving) tails and small hydrophilic (water-loving) heads that decide how they assemble in space. On the other hand, AO1CB is rather eccentric as it creates vesicles in water in spite of its short hydrophobic tail. Thorough study demonstrated that the tails combine molecules of AO1CB into colloidal particles.
“Witnessing AO1CB creating a hazy solution in water when shaken was an unanticipated shock for the group,” claims the corresponding and first author of the study, PARK Kyeng Min, to the media in an interview. “We considered taking benefit of this freshly found property and employing these vesicles as transporters to convey anticancer drugs. After that, by managing where and when the vesicles are busted, the drugs can be issued when needed.”
Beyond assisting AO1CB to assemble independently, the allyloxy tail is also less responsive. It can respond with molecules when exposed to 365 Nanometer wavelength of UV light. Analogous to bursting of a soap bubble, the reaction between the glutathione molecules as well as tails bursts the vesicles of AO1CB apart.