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Title: Nanoparticle theranostics for applications in cancer diagnostics and cancer therapy
Author: Hobson, N. J.
ISNI:       0000 0004 7224 0687
Awarding Body: UCL (University College London)
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2017
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Traditionally, medicine has been conducted using a diagnostic procedure followed by an appropriate therapy and monitored were possible. On the whole, these steps have happened independently of each other. In recent years however many have started to question this independent approach and have asked whether technologies that seek to combine diagnostics and therapies would be more beneficial at treating diseases. This new medical discipline has been termed theranostics. The aim of this project was to design and synthesise a novel theranostic nanoparticle, using a micelle forming amphiphilic carbohydrate, with the overall hypothesis of determining whether using a nanomedicine that can simultaneously image and treat would improve the effectiveness of a cancer treatment. Super paramagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (IONPs) have gained considerable attention as an MRI contrast agent due to their unique magnetic properties and relatively inoffensive toxicity profile. Before IONPs may be used in a biological environment they must overcome several challenges, including being stable to aggregation and organ targeting. In this project a modified chitosan amphiphilic polymer was used to successfully formulate IONPs into colloidal stable aqueous dispersions using two different methods which produced blackberry nanoparticles and raspberry nanoparticles. The raspberry nanoparticles were extensively characterised in vitro and in vivo and were found to be highly effective as an MRI imaging probe for the liver and spleen. Following this, they were tested for their cancer imaging properties in an in vivo mouse tumour model. The drug loading capacity of the raspberry nanoparticles was investigated using lomustine, paclitaxel and methotrexate, however no effective drug encapsulation was determined in this project. Overall, a highly effective MRI probe was engineered and characterised, although its future success will be determined by its activity towards a disease target.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available