Triggering the apoptosis of targeted human renal cancer cells by the vibration of anisotropic magnetic particles attached to the cell membrane
Cancer cells develop resistance to chemotherapy, and the side effects encountered seriously limit the effectiveness of treatments. For these reasons, the search for alternative therapies that target cancer cells without affecting healthy tissues is currently one of the most active areas of research on cancer. The present study focuses on a recently proposed approach for cancer cell destruction based on the targeted triggering of cancer cell spontaneous death through the mechanical vibration of anisotropic magnetic micro/nanoparticles attached to the cell membranes at low frequencies (∼20 Hz) and in weak magnetic fields (∼30 mT). The study was conducted in vitro, on human renal cancer cells with superparamagnetic-like particles. Three types of such particles made of NiFe or magnetite were prepared and characterized (either synthetic antiferromagnetic, vortex or polycrystalline with random grain anisotropy). The triggering of the apoptosis of these cancer cells was demonstrated with NiFe vortex particles and statistically characterized by flow-cytometry studies. The death pathway via apoptosis and not necrosis was identified by the clear observation of caspase activation.