Nav: Home

Magnetic cellular 'Legos' for the regenerative medicine of the future

September 12, 2017

By incorporating magnetic nanoparticles in cells and developing a system using miniaturized magnets, researchers at the Laboratoire Matière et Systèmes Complexes (CNRS/Université Paris Diderot), in collaboration with the Laboratoire Adaptation Biologique et Vieillissement (CNRS/UPMC) and the Centre de Recherche Cardiovasculaire de Paris (Inserm/Université Paris Descartes), have succeeded in creating cellular magnetic "Legos." They were able to aggregate cells using only magnets and without an external supporting matrix, with the cells then forming a tissue that can be deformed at will. This approach, which is detailed in Nature Communications on September 12, 2017, could prove to be a powerful tool for biophysical studies, as well as the regenerative medicine of tomorrow.

Nanotechnology has quickly swept across the medical field by proposing sometimes unprecedented solutions at the furthest limits of current treatments, thereby becoming central to diagnosis and therapy, notably for the regeneration of tissue. A current challenge for regenerative medicine is to create a cohesive and organized cellular assembly without using an external supporting matrix. This is a particularly substantial challenge when it involves synthesizing thick and/or large-sized tissue, or when these tissues must be stimulated like their in vivo counterparts (such as cardiac tissue or cartilage) in order to improve their functionality.

The researchers met this challenge by using magnetism to act on the cells at a distance, in order to assemble, organize, and stimulate them. Cells, which are the building blocks of tissue, are thus magnetized in advance through the incorporation of magnetic nanoparticles, thus becoming true cellular magnetic "Legos" that can be moved and stacked using external magnets. In this new system acting as a magnetic tissue stretcher, the magnetized cells are trapped on a first micromagnet, before a second, mobile magnet traps the aggregate formed by the cells. The movement of the two magnets can stretch or compress the resulting tissue at will.

Researchers first used embryonic stem cells to test their system. They began by showing that the incorporation of nanoparticles had no impact on either the functioning of the stem cell or its capacity for differentiation. These functional magnetic stem cells were then tested in the stretcher, in which they remarkably differentiated toward cardiac cell precursors when stimulation imposed "magnetic beating" imitating the contraction of the heart. These results demonstrate the role that purely mechanical factors can play in cell differentiation.

This "all-in-one" approach, which makes it possible to build and manipulate tissue within the same system, could thus prove to be a powerful tool both for biophysical studies and tissue engineering.
-end-


CNRS

Related Nanoparticles Articles:

Chemists perform surgery on nanoparticles
A team of chemists led by Carnegie Mellon's Rongchao Jin has for the first time conducted site-specific surgery on a nanoparticle.
Nanoparticles remain unpredictable
The way that nanoparticles behave in the environment is extremely complex.
Gold standards for nanoparticles
KAUST researchers reveal how small organic 'citrate' ions can stabilize gold nanoparticles, assisting research on the structures' potential.
Lipid nanoparticles for gene therapy
Twenty-five years have passed since the publication of the first work on solid lipid nanoparticles (SLNs) and nanostructured lipid carriers (NLCs) as a system for delivering drugs.
Nanoparticles hitchhiking their way along strands of hair
In shampoo ads, hair always looks like a shiny, smooth surface.
Better contrast agents based on nanoparticles
Scientists at the University of Basel have developed nanoparticles which can serve as efficient contrast agents for magnetic resonance imaging.
Gentle cancer treatment using nanoparticles works
Cancer treatments based on laser irridation of tiny nanoparticles that are injected directly into the cancer tumor are working and can destroy the cancer from within.
Radiation-guided nanoparticles zero in on metastatic cancer
Zap a tumor with radiation to trigger expression of a molecule, then attack that molecule with a drug-loaded nanoparticle.
Nanoparticles can grow in cubic shape
Use of nanoparticles in many applications, e.g. for catalysis, relies on the surface area of the particles.
Nanoparticles deliver anticancer cluster bombs
Scientists have devised a triple-stage 'cluster bomb' system for delivering the chemotherapy drug cisplatin, via tiny nanoparticles designed to break up when they reach a tumor.

Related Nanoparticles Reading:

Nanoparticles: From Theory to Application
by Günter Schmid (Editor)

Very small particles are able to show astonishing properties. For example, gold atoms can be combined like strings of pearls, while nanoparticles can form one-, two- and three-dimensional layers. These assemblies can be used, for instance, as semiconductors, but other electronic as well as optical properties are possible.
An introduction to the booming field of "nanoworld" or "nanoscience", from fundamental principles to their use in novel applications.
With its clear structure and comprehensive coverage, backed by numerous examples from recent literature, this is a prime reference... View Details


Nanoparticles - Nanocomposites – Nanomaterials: An Introduction for Beginners
by Dieter Vollath (Author)

Meeting the demand for a readily understandable introduction to nanomaterials and nanotechnology, this textbook specifically addresses the needs of students - and engineers - who need to get the gist of nanoscale phenomena in materials without having to delve too deeply into the physical and chemical details.

The book begins with an overview of the consequences of small particle size, such as the growing importance of surface effects, and covers successful, field-tested synthesis techniques of nanomaterials. The largest part of the book is devoted to the particular magnetic, optical,... View Details


Optical Properties of Nanoparticle Systems: Mie and Beyond
by Michael Quinten (Author)

Filling the gap for a description of the optical properties of small particles with sizes less than 1000 nm and to provide a comprehensive overview on the spectral behavior of nanoparticulate matter, this is the most up-to-date reference on the optical physics of nanoparticle systems. The author, an expert in the field with both academic and industrial experience, concentrates on the linear optical properties, elastic light scattering and absorption of single nanoparticles and on reflectance and transmittance of nanoparticle matter. View Details


Nanoparticle Superheroes Defeat Evil Microbes
by Anna Rutkowski (Author)

Anna Rutkowski, a senior at Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic, partnered with Dr. Teri Dankovich of Folia Water. She wants to inspire kids with the VERY inspiring story of Dr. Teri's wonderful paper that makes polluted water drinkable for, potentially, millions of children and families around the world. Read, be inspired, and help save a life. View Details


Lipid Nanoparticles: Production, Characterization and Stability (SpringerBriefs in Pharmaceutical Science & Drug Development)
by Rohan Shah (Author), Daniel Eldridge (Author), Enzo Palombo (Author), Ian Harding (Author)

​What are lipid nanoparticles?  How are they structured?  How are they formed? What techniques are best to characterize them?  How great is their potential as drug delivery systems?  These questions and more are answered in this comprehensive and highly readable work on lipid nanoparticles. This work sets out to provide the reader with a clear and understandable understanding of the current practices in formulation, characterization and drug delivery of lipid nanoparticles. A comprehensive description of the current understanding of synthesis, characterization, stability... View Details


Inorganic Nanoparticles: Synthesis, Applications, and Perspectives (Nanomaterials and their Applications)
by Claudia Altavilla (Editor), Enrico Ciliberto (Editor)

Among the various nanomaterials, inorganic nanoparticles are extremely important in modern technologies. They can be easily and cheaply synthesized and mass produced, and for this reason, they can also be more readily integrated into applications. Inorganic Nanoparticles: Synthesis, Applications, and Perspectives presents an overview of these special materials and explores the myriad ways in which they are used. It addresses a wide range of topics, including:

Application of nanoparticles in magnetic storage media

Use of metal and oxide... View Details


Antibacterial Study of Metal Nanoparticles: Silver, Copper and Zinc Nanoparticles: Synthesis, Characterization and Antibacterial Activity
by Rohit Srivastava (Author), Devendra Kumar (Author)

This book initiates based on the idea that breakthroughs in nanotechnology require a firm grounding in the principles of nanochemistry. Nanotechnology and nanoscience broadly deals with science and technology of materials on the atomic and molecular scale, normally 1 to 100 nanometers. Metal nanoparticles, of either simple or composite nature, play an important and unique physical and chemical properties and represent an increasingly important material in the development of novel nano devices which can be used in numerous physical, biological, biomedical and pharmaceutical applications.... View Details


Progress in Nanoparticles Research
by Chris Thomas Frisiras (Editor), Stuart Allison (Editor), Maria Dolores Bermudez (Editor), Anna V. Bychkova (Editor), Francisco J. Carrion-Vilches (Editor)

View Details


Metal Nanoparticles in Pharma
by Mahendra Rai Ph.D (Editor), Ranjita Shegokar Ph.D (Editor)

Completely dedicated to the biomedical applications of metal nanoparticles, this book covers the different toxicity problems found in healthcare situations and also provides comprehensive info on the use of metal nanoparticles in treating various diseases. Metal Nanoparticles in Pharma is the first edited volume to set up the discussion for a clinical setting and to target a pharmaceutical audience of academic and industry-based researchers. View Details


Green Metal Nanoparticles: Synthesis, Characterization and their Applications. Nanoparticles Naturally
by Suvardhan Kanchi (Author), Shakeel Ahmed (Author)

View Details

Best Science Podcasts 2017

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2017. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Simple Solutions
Sometimes, the best solutions to complex problems are simple. But simple doesn't always mean easy. This hour, TED speakers describe the innovation and hard work that goes into achieving simplicity. Guests include designer Mileha Soneji, chef Sam Kass, sleep researcher Wendy Troxel, public health advocate Myriam Sidibe, and engineer Amos Winter.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#448 Pavlov (Rebroadcast)
This week, we're learning about the life and work of a groundbreaking physiologist whose work on learning and instinct is familiar worldwide, and almost universally misunderstood. We'll spend the hour with Daniel Todes, Ph.D, Professor of History of Medicine at The Johns Hopkins University, discussing his book "Ivan Pavlov: A Russian Life in Science."