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THE ROLE OF CONTROLLED DRUG RELEASE IN CANCER THERAPEUTICS - Essay Example

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Cancer is a broad classification of diseases involving un-regulated cell growth (Castro, 2011, p.15)…
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THE ROLE OF CONTROLLED DRUG RELEASE IN CANCER THERAPEUTICS
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Download file to see previous pages Cancer is known to develop when a gene mutation occurs in the oncogene and suppressor genes. The cell becomes incapable of repairing its damaged DNA and undergoes programmed cell death (Castro 2011, p.12). The cells continue to grow resulting in accumulation of many abnormal cells. These tumours are able to invade the nearby healthy tissues making them cancerous also. Some of the common cancers in the world are liver, lung, prostate, cervix, skin, breast and others. Therefore, there are many types of cancer depending on the organ attacked (Melancon, Zhou and Li 2011, p.12). Cancer has the capability of spreading to other body parts through blood and lymphatic systems. It should be noted that not all tumours are cancerous. For example benign tumours neither invade the neighbouring cells nor spread through the lymphatic or blood systems (Horcajada, Serre, Ferey, Couvreur and Gref 2011, p.102). When cancer is able to spread to other body parts successfully, the process is called metastasis. Scientists research reported in Nature Communications (October, 2012) that spread of cancer is facilitated by the adhesive properties of cancer. Specific molecular interactions between cells and the extracellular matrix cause them to become unstuck at the original tumour site. Many drugs have been formulated in treatment of cancer. However, the effectiveness of these drugs is not as expected since they have serious side effects to the users. The effectiveness of these drugs is being hindered by the hydrophobic nature of these drugs. Therefore, development and application of nanotechnology is one of the solutions to these blockages. (Gubin, 2009, p. 54). Multi Drug Resistance This leads to most of the drugs to have little efficacy unless used in huge doses which will in turn lead to toxic side effects. The main problem in cancer treatment is the multi-drug resistance of the cancerous cells to chemotherapeutics. This is due to the over expression of the Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP)dependent efflux pump called P-glycoprotein which pumps drugs out of the cells body. Loss of P53 genes that promotes cell apoptosis, over-expression of bd-z genes that blocks cell death, reduced drug uptake due to damage of foliate carriers, and increased DNA repair (Dass and Choong 2008, p.21). Liposomes Liposome is an artificial vesicle with an aqueous space into which drugs are inserted (Jain, Das, Swarnakar and Jain 2011, p.37). They have the ability to target cancer cells. They are being used as vehicles for drug administration. The tight junctions in the endothelium cells do not allow movement of large molecules like liposome out of the blood vessel in a normal cell (Yoshikawa, Okada and Nakagawa 2007, p.33). On the other hand tumour cells have hyper-permeability in their endothelial cells due to a physiological defect hence they allow penetration of liposomes inside them (Natalya, R., Zhonggao, G. And Anne, K. 200). Anti-cancer drugs are being coated with these liposomes creating a reservoir in the blood system. On detection of a cancerous cell, the liposome extravasates from these leaky blood vessels, and accumulates in the tumours and kills the cancerous cel ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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