Institute of Macromolecular Chemistry

Topic details

Topic Preparation of stimuli-responsive polymer nanomedicines using microfluidic nanoprecipitation – the in vitro and in vivo performance under simulated physiological conditions
Supervisor Eliézer Jäger, PhD
Consultant Alessandro Jäger, PhD
Department Supramolecular Polymer Systems
Description Nanomedicines gain much more relevance in biomedical applications if they are tailored to be degradable in response to certain external stimuli. Such stimulus may be enzymatic removal of protecting groups, a pH change, light or more recently, the presence of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in cancer. In this project, imbalances in the cancer cells micro-environment (pH changes, ROS production) will be exploited for the design of stimuli-responsive polymers and block copolymers. Inspired by the ease and effectiveness of the self-assembly of amphiphilic block copolymers in solution, several polymer nanomedicines, i.e., polymer micelles, polymer nanoparticles and polymer vesicles will be designed to demonstrate tunable stimuli degradation in the presence of physiologically relevant changes in pH, temperature or ROS concentrations. The technique of microfluidic nanoprecipitation will allow the production of uniform particles with controllable size, shape and surface chemistry in a reproducible and scalable manner. The prepared polymer self-assemblies will be characterized using standard scattering techniques (DSL/SLS/ELS, SAXS and SANS) and by microscopy (SEM, TEM and Cryo-TEM). The effectiveness of the polymer nanoparticles will be evaluated in in vitro and in in vivo models simulating the physiological balanced and imbalanced of the microenvironment.
It is possible to make a part of the study at collaborating workplace in France within the Barrande program “double degree PhD”, the deadline for applications February 14, 2020 (see ). If you are interested in this option, please contact the supervisor as soon as possible.