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Gold Nanoparticle-Enabled Blood Test for Early Stage Cancer Detection and Risk Assessment

Zheng, Tianyu, Pierre-Pierre, Nickisha, Yan, Xin, Huo, Qun, Almodovar, Alvin J.O., Valerio, Felipe, Rivera-Ramirez, Inoel, Griffith, Elizabeth, Decker, David D., Chen, Sixue, Zhu, Ning
ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces 2015 v.7 no.12 pp. 6819-6827
adsorption, autoantibodies, blood sampling, blood serum, carcinogenesis, citrates, gold, hematologic tests, hospitals, humans, immunoglobulin G, light scattering, nanogold, nanoparticles, patients, prostatic neoplasms, proteomics, risk assessment, screening, Florida
When citrate ligands-capped gold nanoparticles are mixed with blood sera, a protein corona is formed on the nanoparticle surface due to the adsorption of various proteins in the blood to the nanoparticles. Using a two-step gold nanoparticle-enabled dynamic light scattering assay, we discovered that the amount of human immunoglobulin G (IgG) in the gold nanoparticle protein corona is increased in prostate cancer patients compared to noncancer controls. Two pilot studies conducted on blood serum samples collected at Florida Hospital and obtained from Prostate Cancer Biorespository Network (PCBN) revealed that the test has a 90–95% specificity and 50% sensitivity in detecting early stage prostate cancer, representing a significant improvement over the current PSA test. The increased amount of human IgG found in the protein corona is believed to be associated with the autoantibodies produced in cancer patients as part of the immunodefense against tumor. Proteomic analysis of the nanoparticle protein corona revealed molecular profile differences between cancer and noncancer serum samples. Autoantibodies and natural antibodies produced in cancer patients in response to tumorigenesis have been found and detected in the blood of many cancer types. The test may be applicable for early detection and risk assessment of a broad spectrum of cancer. This new blood test is simple, low cost, requires only a few drops of blood sample, and the results are obtained within minutes. The test is well suited for screening purpose. More extensive studies are being conducted to further evaluate and validate the clinical potential of the new test.