(Dr. Pooya Davoodi): Dual-agent (anti-cancer drugs and genes) cancer therapy through micro-/nano- particulate carriers

Dr. Pooya Davoodi received his PhD in 2016 from National University of Singapore at the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, under the leadership of Prof. Chi-Hwa Wang and Prof. M.P. Srinivasan. Over the past few years, he has been working on the synthesis and functionalization, chemical characterization and biological evaluation of polymeric biomaterials for dual-agent drug delivery and tissue engineering.  

As cancer takes its toll on human health and well-being, standard treatment techniques such as chemotherapy and radiotherapy often fall short of ideal solutions. Conventional chemotherapy provides a high parenteral dosage of anti-cancer drugs over a short period, which may cause serious toxicities and detrimental side effects in healthy tissues. In addition, the greater efficacy of combined therapy has motivated researchers to design complex biodegradable carriers for the encapsulation and controlled release of multiple drugs with different pathochemical properties at tumor sites. Therefore, over the past 4 years, my research has focused on the development of new drug delivery systems (DDS) (microparticles, hydrogels, and nanoparticles) for dual-agent drug delivery to tumor cells:

·         Synthesis, characterization, and biological evaluation of smart block copolymers with stimuli-responsive linkages for dual-agent drug delivery to cancer cells.

·         Preparation of a new injectable hydrogel/core-shell microparticle composite utilized for localized co-delivery of anti-cancer drugs to triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) cells.

·         Preparation of a combined drug and gene delivery vehicle for the localized treatment of hepatocellular carcinoma HepG2 cells through the disruption of MDM2-p53 complexes by small molecules.