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Nanoparticles for detection and therapy of tumor lesions

DiagnosiDiagnosi di tumoreDiagnosisDrug therapyNanoparticelleNanoparticlesPeptidesPeptidiTerapiaTumor diagnosis


The invention refers to the use of nanostructures conjugated with a specific peptide capable of recognizing small tumor lesions present in the human bladder.

Technical features

Early diagnosis and treatment of tumors is essential to improve the outcome, survival rate and quality of life of patients. The diagnosis of bladder cancer is made thanks to imaging techniques, but the sensitivity of these instruments decreases as the size of the lesion decreases. Due to these technological limitations, patients with bladder cancer experience very high rates of relapse after the first diagnosis, thus undergoing frequent and endless follow-ups with ineffective treatments, resulting in poor quality of life and the highest cost per patient among all cancers. The nanoparticles object of this invention recognize and target the molecules present on the cancerous cells of the bladder tumorand through a specific peptide, acting as a contrast medium. Technically, the nanoparticle is functionalized with a ligand capable of recognizing a component associated with the tumor or associated with inflammation. These particles can also be used in combination with therapeutic treatments (e.g. chemotherapy, immunomodulators). TRL 4

Possible Applications

The invention finds application in the field of:

  • diagnostic imaging;
  • cancer therapy.


  • To detect early stage tumor lesions otherwise invisible through traditional imaging;
  • To decrease the percentage of patients who relapse;
  • To increase the quality of life of  cancer patients;
  • To improve the efficacy of anticancer drugs by increasing the specificity against neoplastic cells.