New research and development for cancer-fighting breast implants

April 11, 2012

New research and development for cancer-fighting breast implants
New research and development for cancer-fighting breast implants

Researchers from two institutions, Brown University and the University of Akron are leading the way in developing breast implants that deter or even detect cancer cells.  These advancements might have a huge impact on women who have had breast cancer or those with a history of the disease in their family.

Biomedical scientists at Brown University have published results in the journal, Nanotechnology, documenting their creation of an implant with a microscopic "bed-of-nails" surface that prevents cancer cells from dwelling and thriving.

"It's a surface that's hospitable to healthy breast cells and less so for cancerous breast cells," said lead researcher, Thomas Webster. "This is like a bed-of-nails surface to them."

Webster and Lijuan Zhang, a chemistry graduate student, tested various types of raised surface implants and discovered that those with microscopic "pimples" measuring 23-nanometers each were most successful in helping healthy cells to grow. As a point of reference, a nanometer is 1/50,000th the width of a human hair. After just one day, this surface yielded 15 percent more healthy endothelial breast cells compared to a normal surface in tests. Researchers hope human trials using this technology will begin within five years.

In a related story, materials scientist, Judit E. Puskas, PhD and her team at the University of Akron are developing a breast implant that would help detect and destroy cancer cells through a $100,000 award from the GE Healthymagination Cancer Challenge. This contest generated more than 500 ideas from 40 countries and more than 200 academic institutions and researchers.

The new type of breast implant would have imbedded medication in the implants' polymer material that would help fight infection, reduce inflammation and possibly even target and destroy stray cancer cells.

Dr. Puskas has collaborated for seven years with Dr. Steven P. Schmidt who is working on biocompatibility and medical application of the product. He says, "The ability to locally target drug delivery has the potential to dramatically improve the course of treatment for breast cancer patients.”

According to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), breast augmentation and breast lift surgery are two of the most popular plastic surgery procedures performed last year, with almost 444,000 surgeries performed.

While cancer-fighting breast implant technology is on the horizon, patients should consult with their board-certified oncologists and plastic surgeons for the most current and best options.


The mission of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS) includes medical education, public education and patient advocacy. Plastic Surgery News Briefs are summaries of current stories found through various news and magazine outlets that relate to or mention plastic surgery and cosmetic procedures. The views expressed in these news articles do not necessarily reflect the opinions of ASAPS, but are merely published as an educational service to our members and the general public. For additional information on these subjects and other plastic surgery related topics, please go to www.surgery.org

Search by location (Zip, City, or Country)

Related Articles

Insider tips on making your breasts look their best

July 16, 2013 - . From your bra style to surgical improvements, there are many ways to improve your décolletage.

Terms to add to your plastic surgery glossary

July 11, 2013 - If you're in the early stages of planning a plastic surgery procedure, you've likely come across a few terms that have made you stop and scratch your head.

What does 'aging gracefully' mean?

July 10, 2013 - When people talk about getting older, it's not uncommon for them to use the term "aging gracefully."

New FDA-approved teardrop-shaped silicone-gel filled breast implant

June 28, 2013 - Mentor got approval for MemoryShape after collecting six years of data from 955 women that demonstrated “a reasonable assurance” of safety and effectiveness, FDA officials reported to NBC News Health. M

Exercising outside this summer? Keep these safety tips in mind

June 7, 2013 - For exercise fanatics, the advent of summer can be an exciting time.

Latest Articles

Plastic surgery on the runway at New York Fashion Week

September 26, 2013 - plastic surgery, plastic surgery before-and-after photos, Botox, Cosmetic Surgery, nose job, rhinoplasty, liposuction, American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery

Plastic lips to get rid of wrinkles?

September 25, 2013 - Remember those wax lips you used to chew on when you were a kid? Well, they seem to have inspired the latest fad in the anti-aging realm.

Illegal buttock injections are more common than you think

September 19, 2013 - How many times have you read a story about illegal plastic surgery in the news?

Yet another anti-wrinkle cream faces lawsuit

September 17, 2013 - It seems to be almost cyclical - every few months, a brand new, game-changing anti-wrinkle cream is introduced to the market, only to face lawsuits due to suggestions that the "scientific" claims made on the side of the bottle are absolute bunk.

Study: If you've got wrinkles, thank Mom

September 12, 2013 - Have you ever wondered why some people get wrinkles at a young age and others don't?

About ASAPS
The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), is recognized as the world’s leading organization devoted entirely to aesthetic plastic surgery and cosmetic medicine of the face and body.  ASAPS is comprised of over 2,600 Plastic Surgeons; active members are certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (USA) or by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada and have extensive training in the complete spectrum of surgical and non-surgical aesthetic procedures. International active members are certified by equivalent boards of their respective countries. All members worldwide adhere to a strict Code of Ethics and must meet stringent membership requirements.

WE ARE AESTHETICS.

Website: www.surgery.org
Follow ASAPS on Twitter: www.twitter.com/ASAPS
Become a fan of ASAPS on Facebook: www.facebook.com/AestheticSociety
Join Smart Beauty Guide: www.smartbeautyguide.com
Locate a plastic surgeon in your area:  http://www.surgery.org/consumers/find-a-plastic-surgeon

Copyright © 2009-2012 ASAPS. All Rights Reserved.