chapter  20
Cancer Nanotechnology for Molecular Profiling and Individualized Therapy
ByMay Dongmei Wang, Jonathan W. Simons, Shuming Nie
Pages 14

Cancer nanotechnology is an interdisciplinary area of research in science, engi-

neering, and medicine with broad applications in molecular profiling and individ-

ualized therapy (1-4). The basic rationale is that nanometer-sized particles such as

biodegradable micelles, semiconductor quantum dots (QDs), and iron oxide nano-

crystals have functional or structural properties that are not available from either

molecular or bulk materials (5-15). 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 to 100 nm 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. The emergence of nano-

technology has opened new opportunities for personalized oncology in which cancer

detection, diagnosis, and therapy are tailored to each individual’s molecular profile,

and also for predictive oncology inwhich genetic ormolecular information is used to

predict tumor development, progression, and clinical outcome.