It is now well accepted that we require a fuller understanding of all major interactions at nano-bio interface to design safe, reliable, and high-yield nanoparticles (NPs) for specific biomedical purposes. To that end, extensive studies have been undertaken to probe every relevant factor at the nano-bio interface. Since 2011, the main goal of my international collaborative research has been to identify and introduce to the scientific community important “hidden factors” factors at the nano-bio interface (e.g., the effect of nanoparticles on environmental health, the concept of Personalized Protein Corona and immune response). These findings may contribute substantially to accelerating the progress of nanoparticle technologies from bench discoveries to clinical use.
Heart failure is a disease state that begins with injured myocardium, causing subsequent deterioration of the heart’s function and the dilation of its chambers. Heart failure is the leading cause of hospital admission worldwide, and over 5 million people currently suffer from this condition in the US. Unlike many other organs, the adult human heart has limited capability for self-repair. Despite advances in clinical trials, the mortality rate associated with heart failure remains high; and there is still no definitive treatment for this disease. The field therefore urgently needs an alternative efficient therapeutic approach. For the last 5 years, we have been actively working on developing nano-based strategies to introduce novel therapeutic approaches for efficient heart regeneration.
Stem Cell Nanoengineering
Stem cells have enormous potential therapeutic effects in catastrophic diseases such as cancer, cardiovascular, and neurodegenerative diseases. Substrates with various micro- and nanotopographies have been intensively used to control the differentiations of stem cells. We developed a potentially reliable, reproducible, and cost-effective method for controlling the fate of stem cells by using both micro- and nano-patterned substrates that biomimic cell shapes. These substrates are expected to have a positive translational impact, as they will introduce a novel, chemical-free bioengineering approach for differentiation of stem cells into mature functional cells, for both drug screening and therapeutic applications in a variety of diseases.
The combination of patients with poor immune systems, prolonged exposure to anti-infective drugs, and cross-infections has given rise to antibiotic resistance, i.e., nosocomial infections with highly resistant pathogens. After extensive research, we prepared different types of engineered multimodal NPs that are completely compatible with human cells. These NPs comprised a magnetic core and a silver ring with a ligand gap and produced high-yield antibacterial effects and eradication of bacterial biofilms.
Array based sensing platforms has emerged a powerful approach toward the detection of wide range of biomolecules. Based on cross-responsive sensor elements, these systems aim to produce composite responses unique to each biomolecule. For the first time in the field, we have developed a sensor array for identification and discrimination of nanoparticles with wide range of physicochemical properties. We have also used sensor array platform for detection of various biomolecules including neurotransmitters.
Cell Sex Variations
We aim to achieve the required in-depth mechanistic understanding of the variation of sex-specific cellular and molecular differences and their interactions with nanoparticles to provide a unique opportunity for advancing cell- and nanomedicine-therapy for cardiac repair in both sexes.