Nanotechnology for targeted cancer therapy

May D. Wang, Dong M. Shin, Jonathan W. Simons, Shuming Nie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Cancer nanotechnology is currently under intense development for applications in cancer imaging, molecular diagnosis and targeted therapy. The basic rationale is that nanometersized particles, such as biodegradable micelles, semiconductor quantum dots and iron oxide nanocrystals, have functional or structural properties that are not available from either molecular or macroscopic agents. When linked with biotargeting ligands, such as monoclonal antibodies, peptides or small molecules, these nanoparticles are used to target malignant tumors with high affinity and specificity. In the 'mesoscopic' size range of 5-100 nm in diameter, nanoparticles also have large surface areas and functional groups for conjugating to multiple diagnostic (e.g., optical, radioisotopic or magnetic) and therapeutic (e.g., anticancer) agents. Recent advances have led to multifunctional nanoparticle probes for molecular and cellular imaging, nanoparticle drugs for targeted therapy, and integrated nanodevices for early cancer detection and screening. These developments have opened exciting opportunities for personalized oncology in which cancer detection, diagnosis and therapy are tailored to each individual's molecular profile, and also for predictive oncology, in which genetic/molecular information is used to predict tumor development, progression and clinical outcome.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)833-837
Number of pages5
JournalExpert Review of Anticancer Therapy
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Anticancer drugs
  • Nanoparticles
  • Nanotechnology
  • Paclitaxel
  • Targeted therapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Pharmacology (medical)

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