Scientists have engineered nanoparticles derived from grapefruit lipids that could be used to deliver anti-cancer and other drugs to tumour cells, says a study. The University of Louisville researchers have uncovered how to create nanoparticles using natural lipids derived from grapefruit, and have discovered how to use them as drug delivery vehicles, reports Science Daily. A team led by researchers Huang-Ge Zhang and Qilong Wang published their findings in Nature Communications Wednesday.
Grapefruit has long been known for its health benefits, and the subtropical fruit may revolutionise how medical therapies like anti-cancer drugs are delivered to specific tumour cells, say researchers.
"These nanoparticles, which we've named grapefruit-derived nanovectors (GNVs), are derived from an edible plant, and we believe they are less toxic for patients, result in less biohazardous waste for the environment, and are much cheaper to produce at large scale than nanoparticles made from synthetic materials," Zhang said.