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Antimicrobial nano-ninjas as chaperones of gemcitabine for pancreatic cancer

Foulkes, Rachel Louise

Antimicrobial nano-ninjas as chaperones of gemcitabine for pancreatic cancer Thumbnail


Rachel Louise Foulkes


Clare Hoskins


Pancreatic cancer is well known for its extremely high death rate, with the current treatments purely used to extend and better the quality of the patient's life instead of providing a “cure”. Because of this, novel drug delivery methods are being looked into. Initially, hybrid nanoparticles (HNPs) comprised of iron and silver were synthesised and characterised using dynamic light scattering (DLS), transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and inductively coupled plasma optical emissions spectroscopy (ICP-OES). The heating ability of these nanoparticles was tested using the surface plasmon resonance properties which silver is well known for, with the only issue found being the spread of heat when dispersed in agar. As well as this, the HNPs were tested for their ability to kill gram-negative bacteria, both with and without the modified gemcitabine, with no statistically significant differences in their effects. A novel targeting agent was successfully attached to the surface of the HNPs but was unsuccessful in targeting the pancreatic cancer cell lines BxPC-3 and PANC-1. Modified gemcitabine, as used in previous studies within this research group, was successfully loaded onto the surface of HNPs, as proven by HPLC. The drug release was not consistent with previous reports and the cytotoxicity results were also found to be inconclusive overall. Overall, the HNPs synthesised here could potentially be used as a dual treatment for pancreatic cancer tumours, but further work is necessary in order to allow them to be used in a clinical setting.


Foulkes, R. L. (2019). Antimicrobial nano-ninjas as chaperones of gemcitabine for pancreatic cancer. (Thesis). Keele University

Thesis Type Thesis
Publicly Available Date May 26, 2023
Award Date 2019-12


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