Carolina Center of Cancer Nanotechnology Excellence
Principal Investigator: Rudolph Juliano, Ph.D., University
of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
Smart Nanoparticles: Uses
soft lithography to create an array of nanoparticles of
virtually any size and shape. Nanoparticles will
be coated with traditional therapeutic drugs, siRNA, or
X-ray & MRI contrast agents for visualization.
They are called "smart" particles because they will also
conjugate a homing peptide to the surface of the
nanoparticle to specifically target it to tumors.
Delivery of adjuvants for
tumor immunity to dendritic cells.
antisense oligonucleotides to tumor cells to up regulate
production of pro-apoptotic Bcl-X proteins.
iron-oxide-based nanoparticles that can be manipulated
in vivo through external magnetic fields.
These magnetic nanoparticles are being evaluated for
their ability to image and treat brain cancers.
Center for Cancer Nanotechnology Excellence Focused on
Principal Investigator: Sanjiv Sam Gambhir, M.D., Ph.D.,
Magneto-Nano Protein Chip:
Uses a state-of-the-art magneto nanosensors to detect
biomolecules bound to magnetic nanoparticles. The
biomolecules produce a change in the magnetic field
applied by the sense which is detected. The
biomolecules are then magnetically sorted to capture
tumor markers in human serum.
Use of Raman spectroscopy
and nanoparticles to detect phosphorylated proteins to
better understand signaling cascades.
Modification of quantum
dots (Qdots) with tumor-specific antibody fragments for
visualization of tumors. Qdots are excited at a
specific wavelength of light and emit at a lower energy
wavelength which allows for image capturing. This
project will try to target the agB3 integrin to image
tumor neovasculature. This project will evaluate
the Qdots ability to bind specific markers on prostate
and other cancer cell lines.
Center of Nanotechnology for Treatment, Understanding &
Monitoring of Cancer (NANO-TUMOR)
Principal Investigator: Sadik Esener, Ph.D, University of
California, San Diego
Developing and evaluating
tumor-homing peptide-nanoparticle complexes.
nanoparticles for drug and sensor delivery. These
structures allow for a controlled, sustained release of
a therapeutic drug over time.
Computational methods for
monitoring tumor progression and response using data
from nanoparticle-delivered sensors.
nanoparticle coatings to increase tumor-targeting
capabilities of smart nanoparticle platforms.
Nanotechnology Center for Personalized & Predictive Oncology
Principal Investigators: Shuming Nie, Ph.D., Emory
University & Georgia Institute of Technology
Jonathan Simons, M.D., Emory University
Developing Qdots in the
range of 700-1700 nm wavelength for targeted delivery of
contrast and therapeutic agents to tumor tissue.
Focusing their research on overcoming the problem of
tissue penetration associated with other Qdot projects.
Targeting the urokinase plasminogen activator receptor
and epidermal growth factor receptor which are both
markers of human breast cancer as well as several other
types of cancer.
Developing a series of
multifunctional nanoparticle therapeutics by using three
taxane drugs, two targeting ligands, and a biodegradable
carrier. Group has already developed a Taxol-folic
acid-heparin ternary nanoparticle that has shown a
17-fold increase in anti-tumor activity in xenograft
Use of antibody-conjugated
nanoparticles to tack prostate tumors in live animals.
One goal is to develop a single cell gap junction dye
transfer assay to distinguish varying degrees of
malignancy within prostate cancer cells. Further
use of this technology will be used to image and target
bone metastasis which is a lethal phenotype in prostate,
breast, and lung cancers.
MIT-Harvard Center of Cancer Nanotechnology Excellence
Principal Investigators: Robert Langer, Ph.D., Massachusetts
Institute of Technology
Ralph Weissleder, M.D., Ph.D., Harvard University,
Massachusetts General Hospital
Targeted nanoparticles for
treating prostate cancer.
Polymer nanoparticles & Qdots for siRNA delivery.
Next-generation magnetic nanoparticles for multimodal,
non-invasive tumor imaging.
Implantable, biodegradable microelectromechanical
systems (MEMS), also known as lab-on-a-chip devices, for
in vivo molecular sensing of tumor-associated
- Low-toxicity nanocrystal Qdots
for biomedical sensing.
Nanomaterials for Cancer Diagnostics & Therapeutics
Principal Investigator: Chad
Mirkin, Ph.D., Northwestern University
Designing bio-barcodes to detect ovarian cancer markers.
Developing a new class of drugs that will inhibit or
Bioactivated nanoprobes for molecular imaging of cancer.
Targeted, multifunctional nanoparticles for drug and
Nanocomposites for imaging prostate cancer cells and
treatment of advanced prostate cancer.
Self-assembling supramolecular nanostructures that
deliver chemotherapy agents directly to breast and other
Principal Investigator: James Heath, Ph.D., California
Institute of Technology
Uses computational methods
to construct databases which show gene expression of
different cancers. This is done through a
selective filtering process in which the computer
screens the expression of genes in one organ and
compares them to another organ. From this process,
the number of genes of interest are reduced from 3000 to
between 10-30 per cancer and can be used to detail the
health of the organ.
Development of a
microfluidic/nanotechnologic platform for the
high-throughput detection and analysis of rare
anti-tumor cytotoxic T-lymphocytes (CTLs). These CTLs
are specific to tumorogenic markers and make up only
0.01-0.1% of the blood volume. It is nearly
impossible to collect these through traditional flow
cytometry due to the need for a large number of cells.
The Siteman Center
of Cancer Nanotechnology Excellence
Principal Investigator: Samuel Wickline, M.D., Washington
University in Saint Louis
Magnetic nanoparticles that can target multiple tumors
for early detection and therapy of cancer.
Nanoparticle-based contrast agent for ultrasound imaging
and therapy of tumors.
Bioinformatics tools to create a database for modeling
the behavior of targeted nanoparticles in the body.
Novel nanoscale sensors for rapidly screening potential
anticancer drugs in single cells.