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Biological Materials and Therapeutics

The Biological Materials and Therapeutics group’s research focuses upon the application of nanotechnology and materials chemistry for the development of novel therapeutics.

SEM of transport of insulin-Au nanoparticlesThe groups expertise cuts across the spectrum of organic and analytical chemistry, pharmacology and biology and seeks to create novel solutions for drug transport and delivery, food supplement delivery, trace compound analysis, and targeted molecular recognition.

The group has excellent links with healthcare authorities and clinicians. Their research is regularly published in high-impact journals and often informs public policy and UK industry practices. 

Currently research focuses on:

  • Mechanisms of toxicity of gold nanoparticles.
  • Nanoparticle radiosensitization for selective targeting of cancer and other disease cells.
  • Use of polymer process technologies (electrospinning/ electrospraying) for drug and food supplement delivery.
  • Nanomaterials as carriers for therapeutic transgenes and cytokines in the central nervous system.
  • Development of hybrid aptamer-imprinted polymer materials for specific RNA/protein targeting.
  • Use of POSS cages to develop three dimensional networks that are strong enough to be used as body part replacements yet allow incursion of cells to populate the matrix.
  • Enzyme catalysed hydrolysis/condensation of di, tri and tetra alkoxysilanes.
  • Phage engineering using silaffins to precipitate silica to form superhydrophobic materials.

Schematic showing principle of nanoparticle supported delivery

Group members