Lauren Evans

Project Title: Development of push-pull nanopharmaceuticals for pancreatic cancer therapy

Pancreatic cancer is the fourth main cancer in the western world, yet has been badged as a cancer of unmet need in the UK since survival rates have not improved over the last 40 years.

Currently first line chemotherapy proves effective in only 23.8% of patients. The drugs used in this treatment do not target the tumour site specifically and often lead to harsh and detrimental side effects in already very ill patients.

We aim to develop tiny particles (nanoparticles) which will carry drug molecules and direct them only to cancerous cells. These nanoparticles will be designed to allow them to travel freely around the patients’ blood stream without causing the unwanted side effects.

Novel nanoparticles will be synthesised and characterised before being loaded with selected drugs. The drugs will be released once inside the cancerous cell upon being subjected to heating. Both the biocompatibility and therapeutic potential of these formulations will be tested in pancreatic cells.  We expect this more efficient, targeted therapy will result in improved therapy and lead to a better patient prognosis.

Awarded: Carnegie PhD Scholarship

Field: Biomedical Sciences

University: University of Strathclyde

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