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Online Laboratory Magazine
09/21/2021

03/31/2017

Increasing stability of protein with gold nanoparticles

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JRC scientists - in close collaboration with researchers from the University of Lyon and Diamond Light Source (Synchtron Radiation Faclity, UK) - have demonstrated that gold nanoparticles significantly protect human serum albumin from denaturation when exposed to "stressing" conditions. This stabilising effect could be beneficial for biotechnology applications used in the medical field.

Proteins are critical elements of any biological system, but various factors such as ultraviolet radiation, temperature, and time can degrade them. Nanoparticles have already shown a great potential in the health sector and especially for the delivery of therapeutic drugs. A new JRC study shows that gold nanoparticles significantly protect human serum albumin (HSA) from denaturation when exposed to "stressing" conditions such as UV irradiation, increase in temperature, and long-term exposure in suboptimal conditions. In particular, the study shows that gold nanoparticles significantly reduce the decrease in secondary structure induced by UV irradiation or extended exposure to ambient temperature. These results suggest possible applications and benefits of gold nanoparticles in the medical field in addition to their role as novel agents for cancer therapy. For example this stabilizing effect could be useful in biotechnology, where gold nanoparticles could be used as biocompatible stabilizing agents

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Source: European Commission, Joint Research Centre