The project is essentially concerned with the development and of nanomaterials in theranostic approach (i.e. diagnosis, delivering targeted therapy and monitoring the response to therapy) as well as multimodal in vivo imaging and in vitro diagnosis.
The theranostic nanomaterials must be capable to travel inside tissues, to recognize e.g. tumor cells (Molecular Based Targeting) and to explicate therapeutic effects by drug selective release (Drug Delivery), thermal ablation therapy or radiation therapy. All these steps will be monitored by such imaging techniques as: Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), Electron Spin Resonance Imaging (ESRI), Optical Imaging techniques, including Fluorescence Molecular Tomography (FMT) used whenever possible in multimodal approach. The rapidly developing field of imaging based on multimodal methodology is bringing researchers from far-ranging fields of molecular pharmacology to nanotechnology engineering and arises from the convergence of established fields of in vivo imaging technologies with molecular and cell biology.
The scientific and technological objectives of the programme:
The main goal of the project is to obtain wide range of nontoxic and efficient inorganic and organic nanostructures for therapy, diagnosis and, the most challenging, theranostic applications. During the project specific objectives will be achieved:
- Development of innovative routes for fabrication/synthesis of inorganic and organic nanoparticles including especially semiconducting quantum dots, carbon based structures and dendrimeric polymers.
- Fabrication of new functionalized nanomaterials for therapy, diagnose and theranostic. They will be e.g. gold nanoparticles, carbon nanotubes and quantum dots as well as polymeric system for molecular and cellular imaging, that are, if appropriate, covalently linked to biological molecules such as peptides, proteins, nucleic acids, or small-molecule ligands, will be able to recognize tumor cells or conjugate with drug delivery systems.
- Establishing preliminary validation procedures leading to introduction of nanoparticles to biomedical market through implementation of physicochemical methods and biotechnological approach for complex assessment of toxicity.
- Defining tools for advancing integrated nanotherapeutic systems, which can diagnose, deliver targeted therapy and monitor the response to therapy (used in personalized medicine).
- Improving imaging multimodal methodology in order to enable wide implementation of nanoparticles to such techniques as Magnetic Resonance Imaging and Fluorescence Molecular Tomography.