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Workshop / Seminar

Chem 594 – Organic/CBS Seminar

Fulmer Hall
Room 438
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About the event

Presenter: Anubhav Dhull

Lab: Sharma Lab

Title: Rationally Engineered Dendrimer Technology for Targeted Drug Delivery to Neurons

Abstract: The delivery of small molecule drugs across the blood brain barrier (BBB) is difficult, making the development of therapies for neurological diseases very challenging.  Efforts have persistently been underway to develop novel nanocarriers which are capable of precisely transporting drugs across the BBB to target the specific regions of brain damage. Even if drugs or nanoparticles get across the impaired BBB following brain injury or neuroinflammation, their synergistic uptake into the critical brain cells such as neurons and activated microglia/macrophages involved in brain diseases remains challenging. Targeting neurons is specifically more complex since they are far lower in number and less phagocytic in nature compared to the other immune cells in the brain. Beyond the obstacle of attaining precise target specificity in the brain, there are additional challenges in the clinical implementation and commercialization of nanotherapeutics, including concerns related to cytotoxicity, scalability, structural imperfections, complex synthetic design, consistency in production, product purity, and in vivo stability. These hurdles can be circumvented by creating simple design, incorporating biocompatible and non-toxic building blocks, utilizing inexpensive starting materials, and employing highly efficient and easily scalable chemical processes. In this talk, I will present the design, synthesis, and characterization of 2-deoxy-glucose surfaced dendrimer nanosystem for synergistic delivery of the neuroprotective drug pioglitazone to the neurons and activated microglia at the site of injury in the brain. The talk will also cover the preliminary results on the in vivo uptake and efficacy of dendrimer-pioglitazone conjugate in a pediatric traumatic brain injury model.