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|Matrerials Science Program|
by Jin Xie, Professor
Chemistry Department, University of Georgia
Our research focuses on the development and evaluation of metal-, polymer- or protein-based nanoparticles applicable in an imaging and/or therapeutic context. The idea is to conceptualize the nanoparticles not as merely tiny aggregates of molecules but rather as platforms with large surface-to-volume ratios. By harnessing the well-developed surface chemistry, one can load a wide range of functionalities onto the particle surface. In this talk, I will introduce two technologies that are being developed in our lab. One is ferritin-based drug delivery carriers. Ferritin is a major iron storage protein found in human and most living organisms. We previously constructed RGD-modified ferritin nanoparticles and confirmed their good tumor selectivity both in vitro and in vivo. Very recently, we found that doxorubicin could be encapsulated into RGD-ferritin nanoparticles at high rate (up to 70 wt%) and delivered to tumors for targeted therapy. The second story is an optical imaging probe made of Cr doped LiGaO3 (LGO:Cr). LGO:Cr can be charged with UV light and then emit in the dark in the near-infrared (NIR) spectrum window for duration of hours. Since LGO does not require concurrent excitation to produce optical signals, the autofluorescence issue that has long been impeding fluorescence imaging is avoided. Indeed, our preliminary data showed a high signal-to-noise ratio, a deep tissue penetration depth, and great sensitivity with LGO-labeled cells or molecules.
Date last modified: Monday, 11-Aug-2014 16:29:41 CDT
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