Biomedical Engineering Seminar: Design of core-shell nanoparticles for drug delivery
Old Metallurgy Building
T: (03) 8344 6606
Micelles and vesicles have long been proposed as carriers for low molecular weight molecules including drugs. The core-shell systems are found to be useful for the encapsulation of hydrophobic drugs in the core while maintaining the water solubility of the system with the hydrophilic shell. In addition, their sizes between 20 – 100 nm makes them perfect to target the drug passively to the tumour. Despite their high stability, micelles still tend to break up upon dilution once they reached their lower critical aggregation concentration. Several approaches have been undertaken to stabilise these structures using the crosslinking of the core or shell.
This talk will discuss how the synthesis of the underlying block copolymers, which build up these core-shell nanoparticles. The chemistry of these polymers does not only determine how big these particles are, but it can also influence drug encapsulation and the interaction of the particles with the environment. We will touch on the delivery of traditional anti-cancer drugs, but we will also discuss how metal-complexes such as the anti-cancer drug such as cisplatin can be delivered. Furthermore, we will discuss how we can alter the chemistry of the shell by introducing sugars, peptide and proteins, which ultimately will affect the uptake of the carrier by tumour cells. The cellular uptake was found to be dependent on size, shape and surface chemistry, but also the stability of the nanoparticles. Good uptake by tumour cell lines was observed to correlate directly to higher toxicities of the drug.