Phase Change Nanodroplet - Liposome Conjugates for Enhanced Drug Delivery

Technology #ua15-034

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Marek Romanowski
Associate Professor, Biomedical Engineering
Terry Matsunaga
Professor, Radiology
Theodore Trouard
Associate Professor, Biomedical Engineering
Managed By
Rakhi Gibbons
Asst. Director, Life Sciences (520) 626-6695

Technology ID: UA15-034


Technology Background: Blood-brain barrier (BBB) technology is a set of scientific techniques and practices that enables medicinal substances to pass through the previously impenetrable BBB. BBB technology combines technologies from the pharmaceutical/biotechnology with advanced drug delivery technologies, allowing therapeutics to cross the blood-brain barrier.


Invention: This technology utilizes phase-change nanodroplets-liposome conjugages to achieve targeted drug delivery of oncology therapeutics.  The technology uses ultrasound to convert the nanodroplet into a gas, whereby this cavitation of the nanoparticles cases stress on the tight junction areas of the brain. The cavitation will temporarily make the blood-brain barrier more permeable, allowing the nanoparticles and their conjugated drug-payloads to cross the blood-brain barrier to the diseased brain tissue.


Advantages: One advantage of the current invention is that the proposed nanoparticles can provide more effective and efficient drug delivery because the shell of the nanoparticle is conjugated with drug-containing liposomes, allowing a much larger drug payload to be delivered to the targeted tissue. Another advantage of the current invention is that the nanoparticle size can be produced at a significantly smaller size (range of 1-10x smaller) than existing microbubble technologies. Because the blood-brain barrier is highly sensitive to particle size, this novelty may prove to be vital to the effectiveness of the invention. Finally, the nanoparticle is highly stable and can be prepared and stored for an extended period of time before usage.


Applications: This technology may provide an effective mechanism by which existing oncology therapeutics can be delivered to diseased brain tissue. The proposed technology is focused on effective and efficient oncology drug delivery across the blood-brain barrier.


Patent Status:


Lead Inventor: Theodore Trouard, Terry Matsunaga, and Marek Romanowski


Licensing Manager: Rakhi Gibbons