We are developing several gene delivery and stem cell delivery systems for cytokine-based gene therapy, with a focus on sonoporation gene delivery (sonodelivery) and adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells as vehicles. Although the lab group is involved with many projects, the vast majority of our work falls under one of three overarching projects.
Project 1 is centered on disrupting immune: bone malignant interactions using multifunctional cytokine sonodelivery. We are developing more effective therapies for inflammatory bone loss (arthritis) as well as metastatic prostate cancer using intramuscular sonodelivery of targeted cytokine IL-27, as well as developing novel NK cell engagers. We utilize modern optical and other noninvasive molecular imaging to detect therapeutic delivery and efficacy.
Project 2 examines the biology and potential of adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells (ASC) for tissue regeneration, including bone repair and for halting tumor promotion. Conversely, for understanding how stroma can promote tumor growth, we examine the role of ASC in these mechanisms, and how to introduce novel immune agents such as oncolytic Ad or IL-27 for ASC delivery to tumors.
Project 3 is focused on the development of small molecules and peptides with a broad translational application for treating bone, cartilage regeneration, and anti-inflammatory effects. Small molecules in development mimic the interaction between Pigment Epithelial Growth Factor (PEDF) and its receptor or interactions in the STING or TAK1 pathways. Novel nanoparticles are also in development for inflammatory therapy to deliver the small molecules of interest in collaboration with Ristroph and Sintim labs.
Collaborative Interactions: Todd Emrick, U.Mass-Amherst; Purdue BME - Qazi; Purdue ABE- Ristroph, Purdue Chem – Sintim, Picanço-Castro, USP-Ribeirão Preto, Purdue Pharm- Matosevic.