DNA Machinery that can Sabotage the Blood Supply of Tumors
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14

Feb

2018

14

Feb

2018

DNA Machinery that can Sabotage the Blood Supply of Tumors

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Researchers have been building simple molecular machines out of DNA for some years now. This approach to molecular machinery is well suited to applications that involve conditional activation based on the proteins present in the surrounding environment; a lot of the necessary functional parts already exist in DNA and just have to be assembled in the right way. The Oisin Biotechnologies cell-killing technology is a smaller example of the type than the approach here, in which sizable DNA containers are constructed. They carry a cargo that will disrupt local blood flow, and are triggered into opening by cancerous cell surface proteins, thereby sabotaging the nutrient supply to tumors without harming other tissues. It is all quite clever and quite mechanical.

DNA nanorobots that travel the bloodstream, find tumors, and dispense a protein that causes blood clotting can trigger the death of cancer cells in mice. The researchers started with the goal of finding a path to design nanorobots that can be applied to treatment of cancer in humans. They first generated a self-assembling, rectangular, DNA-origami sheet to which they linked thrombin, an

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Article originally posted at
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