Med Gadget takes an in-depth look at an interview that was conducted with Professor Sylvain Martel. Throughout the interview, the topic of bacteria was discussed. Specifically, it was discussed in regards to how it can be used as an anti-cancer therapy. Information on how the strategy was conceived, potential safety concerns and more are discussed.
- Polytechnique Montréal, and McGill University have developed a new way to carry anti-cancer drugs to a target site in the body – using bacteria.
- The magnetotaxis method allows the bacteria to come sufficiently close for them to detect the change in oxygen levels inside the tumor. When the bacteria are inside the tumor, magnetotaxis is switched off and they rely on oxygen concentrations to find the hypoxic zones.
- The latter aerotactic targeting happens autonomously, and requires that the bacteria are already close to the tumor, and so would not be as effective if used alone without magnetotactic targeting.
“In their natural environment, these specific bacteria have an internal chain of magnetic nanoparticles that acts like a microscopic compass needle.”