New Plant-Based Method for Creating Cancer-Fighting Nanocomposites

Greg Howard
24th May, 2024

New Plant-Based Method for Creating Cancer-Fighting Nanocomposites

Image Source: Natural Science News, 2024

Key Findings

  • Researchers at King Saud University developed a new eco-friendly method using Senna surattensis extract to synthesize ZnO-TiO2/RGO nanocomposites
  • The synthesized nanocomposites showed improved physicochemical properties, including smaller, uniform particle size and enhanced surface charge
  • ZnO-TiO2/RGO nanocomposites demonstrated higher toxicity to cancer cells (HCT116) and lower toxicity to normal cells (HUVCE), indicating potential for targeted cancer therapy
The study conducted by researchers at King Saud University aims to enhance the anticancer and biocompatibility performance of various nanoparticles, including TiO2 NPs, ZnO NPs, ZnO-TiO2 nanocomposites (NCs), and ZnO-TiO2/reduced graphene oxide (RGO) NCs against human cancer (HCT116) and normal (HUVCE) cells[1]. This research builds upon the concept of targeted drug delivery in nanomedicine, where the goal is to deliver therapeutic agents directly to the affected area to minimize side effects and improve efficacy[2]. The researchers developed a novel procedure for synthesizing ZnO-TiO2/RGO NCs using Senna surattensis extract, a plant-based method that is eco-friendly and cost-effective. The improved physicochemical properties of the obtained samples were investigated using various techniques such as X-ray diffraction (XRD), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), dynamic light scattering (DLS), and UV-visible spectroscopy. XRD results revealed that adding ZnO and RGO sheets affects the crystal structure and phase of TiO2 nanoparticles. SEM and TEM images displayed that the TiO2 and ZnO nanoparticles were small with a uniform spherical morphology in the prepared ZnO-TiO2/RGO NCs. The particle size was found to be approximately 14.80 ± 0.5 nm. XPS data confirmed the surface chemical composition and oxidation states of ZnO-TiO2/RGO NCs. FTIR spectroscopy identified the functional groups present in the prepared nanoparticles and nanocomposites. DLS data showed that the addition of ZnO and RGO sheets improved the negative surface charge of the prepared pure TiO2 NPs (-22.51 mV), ZnO NPs (-18.27 mV), ZnO-TiO2 NCs (-30.20 mV), and ZnO-TiO2/RGO NCs (-33.77 mV). Optical analysis exhibited that the bandgap energies of TiO2 NPs (3.30 eV), ZnO NPs (3.33 eV), ZnO-TiO2 NCs (3.03 eV), and ZnO-TiO2/RGO NCs (2.78 eV) were further enhanced by adding ZnO NPs and RGO sheets. This indicates that the synthesized samples can be applied not only to cancer therapy but also to environmental remediation. Biological data demonstrated that the produced ZnO-TiO2/RGO NCs show a more cytotoxic effect on HCT116 cells compared to pure TiO2 NPs and ZnO-TiO2 NCs. On the other hand, these NCs displayed the lowest level of toxicity towards normal HUVCE cells. These results indicate that the ZnO-TiO2/RGO NCs have strong toxicity against HCT116 cells and are compatible with normal cells. The research ties in with earlier findings on the use of ZnO nanoparticles in cancer therapy. ZnO nanoparticles have been noted for their anticancer efficacy due to their novel physicochemical properties, including the ability to induce oxidative stress and apoptosis in cancer cells[3]. This study builds on that by combining ZnO with TiO2 and RGO to enhance the anticancer properties while maintaining biocompatibility. Additionally, the study aligns with previous work on using nanohybrids for cancer treatment. For instance, TiO2 nanotubes combined with reduced graphene oxide have shown promise in both detecting and treating cancer cells[4]. The current study extends this by demonstrating that the addition of ZnO further improves the anticancer efficacy and biocompatibility of the nanocomposites. In summary, the study from King Saud University presents a significant advancement in the field of nanomedicine by developing a novel plant-based method for synthesizing ZnO-TiO2/RGO nanocomposites. These nanocomposites show enhanced physicochemical properties and improved anticancer performance while being biocompatible with normal cells. This research could pave the way for more effective and targeted cancer treatments, building upon the foundational concepts of targeted drug delivery and the promising results of earlier studies on ZnO and TiO2-based nanomaterials.



Main Study

1) Green synthesis of ZnO-TiO2/RGO nanocomposites using Senna surattensis extract: a novel approach for enhanced anticancer efficacy and biocompatibility.

Published 22nd May, 2024

Related Studies

2) Targeted Drug Delivery - From Magic Bullet to Nanomedicine: Principles, Challenges, and Future Perspectives.

3) Enhanced Anticancer Performance of Eco-Friendly-Prepared Mo-ZnO/RGO Nanocomposites: Role of Oxidative Stress and Apoptosis.

4) TiO2 nanotubes/reduced GO nanoparticles for sensitive detection of breast cancer cells and photothermal performance.

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