Researchers at the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas, may have found a new form of therapy to help treat breast cancer tumors.
According to the Los Angeles Times
, scientists tested the use of nanoparticles covered in gold by embedding them into tumors in mice and then exposing them to temperatures of 108 degrees.
Researchers found that treating the mice with a combination of heat and regular radiation helped battle breast cancer tumors better than just using the two methods by themselves.
The results of the study were published in last month's Science Translational Medicine, and scientists hope to begin trials on humans soon.
Author of the study Jeffrey Rosen acknowledged that the heat disables the cancer cells, which are normally resistant to radiation. He said that this procedure may be useful for women who have large tumors that need to be shrunken before a lumpectomy or for those who have already undergone the surgery but need remaining cells that were left behind to be killed.
More than 200,000 new cases of breast cancer are expected to be diagnosed this year in the U.S., according to the American Cancer Society.