Nanoparticles against cancer in the Live Research Fair

Can we improve the treatment of cancer with the help of nanoparticles? How can we help improve the effectiveness of a drug? Which treatment works best? And how can we test it?

These are some of the questions that the group if Functional Validation and Preclinical Research (FVPR) has responded, from the research group CIBBIM-Nanomedicine. Drug Delivery and Targeting at the Live Research Fair. For four days, from 3 to 6 May, the group of researchers brought their laboratory at Cosmocaixa Barcelona to explain how to do research on nanoparticles in relation to the drug release for cancer treatments.

Visitors to the fair got to know, live, how researchers tested nanoparticles as a vehicle to bring drugs to a tumour. They have learned that a nanoparticle is a thousandth of a millimetre: they are extremely small, but the drugs are even more. And they got to know several ways we have of testing them in the laboratory: first cells (in vitro) and in laboratory animals (in vivo).

FVPR group is a multidisciplinary research team working in the field of nanomedicine. It has from biochemists, biologists and biotechnologists to technicians specializing in pathological histology. And its work focuses on precisely this: validate nanotechnological products in collaboration with other research groups. This means that they test nanoparticles that come from other laboratories, and eventually use them to treat diseases such as cancer and rare diseases.

This is the third consecutive year that the VHIR participates in the fair, organized by the Barcelona Science Park, which is mostly for secondary school students. More than 80 researchers from eleven leading centres in Catalonia, have moved their labs to the space of the fair for these days. In the last year, more than 1,500 visitors were able to participate in scientific experiments and solve the riddles posed.