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While diamonds are often considered to be prestigious, they also emerge as a formidable adversary for cancer. Nanodiamonds, composed of carbon nanoparticles ranging from two to eight nanometers, demonstrate the potential to halt the progression of cancer, facilitating more effective tumor treatment. Researchers suggest that these minuscule diamonds could be help fight against cancer, presenting a promising avenue for medical advancements.

Significance of diamonds in cancer treatment

In India, researchers harnessed microscopic crystals, integrating them with diverse chemicals and medications to impede the migration of cancer cells to unaffected areas of the body. This investigation builds upon earlier research revealing the heightened affinity of dividing cells for nanodiamonds. Additionally, when subjected to nanodiamonds treated with carboxylic acid, epithelial cells—those that envelop and line organs and skin—demonstrated a diminished capacity to traverse cellulose membranes.

Rajiv Saxena and a group from South Asian University conducted investigations to evaluate nanodiamonds as a potential strategy to combat tumor metastasis, which involves the migration of cancerous cells to different regions of a patient’s body. In their trials involving mice, the researchers administered carboxylic nanodiamonds to B16F10 melanoma cells, a form of skin cancer.

The findings indicate that nanodiamonds effectively impeded the migratory capacity of cancer cells. Conversely, untreated tumor cells exhibited the capability to proliferate and relocate to novel regions within the mice, thereby fostering additional cancer progression and exacerbating the severity of the disease. Mice subjected to nanodiamond treatment exhibited minimal to no dissemination of their tumors.

Carboxyl nanodiamonds hinder B16F10 cells’ capacity

The researchers wrote in the PNAS Nexus journal that in the experimental metastasis model, the administration of carboxyl nanodiamonds (cND) hindered the capacity of B16F10 cells, which were directly introduced into the bloodstream, to undergo extravasation from blood vessels. Furthermore, cND treatment impeded the cells’ ability to navigate through the tissue extracellular matrix (ECM) for reaching premetastatic niche regions.

Drawing on these discoveries, the research team posits that these diminutive carbon nanoparticles could signify a promising advancement in thwarting the proliferation of cancer on a global scale.