The EIB (European Investment Bank) has just given a 40 million Euro loan to a relatively young company, Nanobiotix. This French company was created in 2003 and is specialized in nanomedicine. The objective is to create innovative cancer treatments using nanoparticles, a new and expanding technology.
The European commission was convinced of the potential of NBTXR3, a new product developed by Nanobiotix. Thanks to a 40 million euro budget spread out over 5 years, the biotech company will soon be able to carry out clinical trials that target localized cancers in the head and the neck.
NBTXR3 does not prevent the onset of cancer. Rather, the product made of microscopic hafnium oxide beads was invented to help eliminate cancer cells. The drug is first injected into the cancerous tumour just before a radiotherapy session. Then, the nanoparticles concentrate ionized radiation energy at the source of the tumour to more effectively destroy the diseased cells. This innovative process makes it possible to better target cancerous cells and better protect healthy tissue from radiation. The other advantage of this treatment is to reduce risk of a cancer relapse.
Tobacco, a global scourge
NBTXR3 appears to be a very promising drug in the fight against the spread of cancerous cells. Indeed, there was significant interest in the drug even before the EIB’s announcement of the loan — Nanobiotix stock rose 65% last June.
Vytenis Andriukaitis, European Commissioner for Health, underlined the importance of developing effective therapies to fight cancer, which is the leading cause of death in the European Union. Globally, tobacco is responsible for 6 million deaths per year. The combustion of a single cigarette generates 250 dangerous molecules, at least fifty of which are carcinogenic.
Today, doctors have a diverse arsenal to combat the various forms of cancer, but the scientific community still recommends quitting smoking in order to increase the chances of healing during cancer treatment. Of course, the use of vaping products could be a safe alternative for smokers who are undergoing cancer treatment.