Cancer treatment is rather dangerous to the body, often involving many secondary effects, including nausea, hair loss, and weight fluctuations. The search for non-invasive, highly efficient, and targetable treatments ameliorates these issues. Super paramagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (SPIONS) have been used for other medical purposes such as magnetic resonance imaging contrast agent and is being extensively studied as a potential candidate for many cancer therapeutic and diagnostic approaches due to its biocompatibility and superior magnetic properties. When subjected to an external alternating magnetic field SPIONS generate heat mainly due to the friction of the SPIONS against the fluid it is suspended in. Upon exposure to this magnetic heating, at the temperatures about 42-45°C, cancer cells have reduced viability than the healthy cells. SPIONs show promising properties for being a localized magnetic hyperthermia treatment agent. There are limitations in this approach, however. When interacting with cell structures the magnetic heating effect is diminished. To overcome this, alterations to the SPIONS are sought out. In this study SPIONS, and SPIONS decorated with a photo thermal agent, Silver, were successfully synthesized and characterized. The dual heating approaches, magnetic and Photothermal, are tested on the SPIONS and Ag-SPIONS in hopes of achieving bimodal therapy. Additionally, conventional synthesis methods versus green methods will be investigated.


Maheshika Palihawadana

Committee Member

Andy Roberts

Committee Member

Andrew Clough

Committee Member

Jorge Mendez

Date of Degree




Document Type



Master of Science (MS)

Program of Study



Physics and Astronomy


Science, Engineering and Technology



Rights Statement

In Copyright