Cancer treatment looks to iron ore

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Iron ore may be soon draw more than an economic benefit for Australians, with WA-based The Helicon Group planning to use the resource to treat cancer.

According to The West Australian the medical company is planning to spend $3 million over the next 18 months experimenting with iron ore.

The company said it was planning to use iron oxide nanoparticles as an experimental thermal cancer treatment on animals.

The plan is to inject the particles into a tumour and use a magnet to heat them and destroy the tumour.

It is hoped the treatment will be able to have a minimal impact on surrounding tissue.

Helicon chief executive Fabio Pannuti told The West Australian the company was looking to source its iron ore from local producers.

“At present the nanoparticles are sourced in Germany but as we’re an Australian company we would like to partner with a large mining company here,” he said.

He said the experimental treatment was still in its early days but there was a possibility it could one day be used on humans.

“Obviously the Holy Grail is to achieve a result in humans, but at this stage our main plan is to develop an animal model that can kick off in 18 months time.”

Image: Business Standard

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