Étudiante-chercheuse étoile June 2017

Myriam Laprise-Pelletier

PhD student in Mining Engineering
Université Laval

Award-winning publication: Low-Dose Prostate Cancer Brachytherapy with Radioactive Palladium–Gold Nanoparticles

Published in: Advanced Healthcare Materials


In 2016 alone, it is estimated that over 24 000 Canadians were diagnosed with prostate cancer. Nearly 30% received brachytherapy, which consists in inserting between 20 and 80 millimetre-sized radioactive metal pellets into the patient's prostate. However, the therapy creates uneven irradiation areas and affects x-ray image readings during cancer follow ups. In addition, the size of the implants can cause pain and discomfort. The use of radioactive nanoparticles, as suggested by Myriam Laprise-Pelletier and her team, therefore constitutes a novel approach. The nanoparticles may be diffused in a biological tissue and ensure a more even distribution of the radioactivity. By injecting a single dose of radioactive nanoparticles directly into a tumour, it is possible to increase the efficiency of the treatment, reduce the dose absorbed by the nearby organs and, more broadly, lessen the impacts of the medical procedure.