Research Seminar: Nanoparticle based therapeutic approaches to engineer brain cell behavior.
- Friday, January 22, 2016 from 11:00am to 12:00pm
- Barnard Hall - view map
Visiting researcher Dr. Anja Kunze, UCLA Department of Bioengineering, will give a presentation on her recent work:
Inorganic nanoparticles have emerged in many different biological fields such as imaging, sensing, or cancer therapeutics. In cancer studies, inorganic nanoparticles are used to destroy cancerous tissues either through heat or toxic interactions. In contrast, my current research focus is to use inorganic, in particular superparamagnetic nanoparticles as mechanical stimulators to control intracellular brain cell behavior, with potential applications in therapeutic methods against neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease.
In this talk, I will introduce superparamagnetic nanoparticles on chip, which I call nanomagnets. The nanomagnets have the ability to pass the cell membrane allowing them to interfere with intracellular proteins, vesicles and molecular motors. Within a magnetic field gradient nanomagnets generate forces in the low-pico newton range at an array of neuronal cells and therefore hold the potential to engineer intracellular protein distribution and cellular behavior. I will present results that suggest the possibility to engineer the location of intracellular proteins, vesicle motion and calcium activity by nanomagnetic forces. Nanoparticle based mechanical stimulation is broadly applicable to a diverse range of brain cells and other cell phenotypes, and has a large potential to shape the development of novel therapeutics and neuronal cell models against neurodegenerative diseases.