Melanoma treatment via non-specific adhesion of cancer cells using charged nano-clays in pre-clinical studies

Sahel N. Abduljauwad, Habib ur Rehman Ahmed, Vincent T. Moy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


The incidence of malignant melanoma has rapidly increased in the last two decades. There are many challenges associated with the current conventional therapies, including tumour size and location, the specificity of treatments, tumour resistance, non-mutually exclusive mutations, drug resistance, and many adverse side effects. Due to conventional therapies having several limitations, we have explored an alternative therapy such as nano-clays; nano-sized natural materials originating from clay fraction of the soil. Recently, clay nanoparticles have increasingly been used as a drug carrier for cancer treatment due to their high absorption, ability to engulf microbes, and low toxicity. In this study, we evaluated the effects of a nano-clays mix on melanoma cell proliferation and cell viability in vitro and melanoma growth in vivo xenograft animal model. The in vitro study revealed that nano-clay treatments significantly reduced melanoma cell proliferation and cell viability in a dosage-dependent manner. The in vivo tumour xenograft model demonstrated that nano-clay mix treatment led to significantly reduced tumour size and weight, decreased tumour cell mitosis, and induced tumour necrosis. These processes owe to the most probable changes in the membrane potential of the cancer cells once nano-clays bind with the former through the high non-specific adhesion characteristic of the cancer cells. As the data suggest an important role of nano-clays as an inhibitor of melanoma cell proliferation and survival, these prove to be a natural and effective medicine for the treatment of melanoma. The proven compatibility of nano-clays with the human cells with little side-effects makes them a highly preferred choice for the treatment of melanoma and probably other types of cancers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number2737
JournalScientific reports
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2021
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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