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Inhaler Developed to Deliver Lung Cancer Treatments

Chris Carter (University of Strathclyde)

Chris Carter (University of Strathclyde)

Researchers at University of Strathclyde in Glascow, Scotland have developed an inhalation-based process to administer treatments to lung cancer patients. The method uses a nebulizer that delivers drugs in the form of a fine mist, rather than the current intravenous delivery methods.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that more people in the United States — both men and women — die from lung cancer than any other type of cancer. In 2007, the last year for which data are available, more than 203,500 people in the U.S. were diagnosed with lung cancer, with nearly 159,000 deaths.

The Strathclyde researchers say their system can administer treatments for lung cancer more quickly and without harmful side effects, which can cause kidney damage, associated than existing methods. Their process can also make it possible to deliver the drugs in smaller doses without reducing benefits to patients.

Chris Carter (pictured right), at the Strathclyde Institute of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences, led the research. She notes by “delivering cisplatin, one of the most widely used drugs for lung cancer, in a vaporized form, we would be able to get it to the cancerous cells and avoid the damage to healthy cells which can be hugely debilitating to patients.” Carter adds, “It would make the treatment far less onerous for them and we hope it would help them to live longer.”

This research received part of its funding from the Scottish Enterprise’s Proof of Concept Programme that supports pre-commercialization stages of technologies emerging from Scotland’s universities and research institutes.

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