ALAN (Aptamer Linked Anti Nucleolin) is an aptamer-based investigational drug candidate currently under development and evaluation with the potential to treat a variety of different cancer types, including liquid and solid tumors.  A key component of this drug candidate, the AS1411 aptamer, has been tested in over 100 cancer patients and is well tolerated with no evidence of severe side effects; with at least 7 patients having long-lasting clinical responses in which their cancers disappeared or shrank substantially.  ALAN binds the aptamer AS1411 to a gold nanoparticle (AS1411-GNP), which gives it increased potency and versatility. Preclinical studies in breast cancer with AS1411-GNP showed significantly enhanced activity compared to AS1411 alone. The broader versatility conferred on AS1411 by linking it to the nanoparticle includes such uses as enhanced radiation therapy, tumor imaging, and the delivery of other anti-cancer compounds directly to tumor cells.