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Water Dynamics in Cancer Cells: Lessons from Quasielastic Neutron Scattering...

by Murillo Longo Martins, Heloisa Bordallo, Eugene Mamontov
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The severity of the cancer statistics around the globe and the complexity involving the behavior of cancer cells inevitably calls for contributions from multidisciplinary areas of research. As such, materials science became a powerful asset to support biological research in comprehending the macro and microscopic behavior of cancer cells and untangling factors that may contribute to their progression or remission. The contributions of cellular water dynamics in this process have always been debated and, in recent years, experimental works performed with Quasielastic neutron scattering (QENS) brought new perspectives to these discussions. In this review, we address these works and highlight the value of QENS in comprehending the role played by water molecules in tumor cells and their response to external agents, particularly chemotherapy drugs. In addition, this paper provides an overview of QENS intended for scientists with different backgrounds and comments on the possibilities to be explored with the next-generation spectrometers under construction.