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NMIN Lectures

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NMIN

Pieter Cullis Invitational Lecture
Scientific Integrity Series

Topic: TBA

Dr. Ivan Oransky

Editor-in-Chief, Spectrum; Distinguished Writer In Residence, Carter Journalism Institute at New York University

Thursday, 7 April 2022

9:00 – 10:00 am PT | 12:00 – 1:00 pm ET

Talk description coming soon.

 

Dr. Ivan Oransky, MD, is co-founder of Retraction Watch, editor in chief of Spectrum, and distinguished writer in residence at New York University’s Arthur Carter Journalism Institute. He also serves as president of the Association of Health Care Journalists. Ivan previously was vice president of editorial at Medscape, global editorial director of MedPage Today, executive editor of Reuters Health, and held editorial positions at Scientific American and The Scientist. A 2012 TEDMED speaker, he is the recipient of the 2015 John P. McGovern Medal for excellence in biomedical communication from the American Medical Writers Association, and in 2017 was awarded an honorary doctorate in civil laws from The University of the South (Sewanee). In 2019, the judges for the John Maddox Prize, which promotes those who stand up for science in the face of hostility, gave him a commendation for his work at Retraction Watch.

Dr. Ivan Oransky

The Pieter Cullis Invitational Lecture series features individuals working at the frontiers of nanomedicines research and innovation and showcases remarkable examples of scientific and commercial progress in the field. 

NMIN

NMIN Lectures

Toward a Bio-Toolbox for Nanomedicine Research

Dr. Keith Pardee

Associate Professor in the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy at the University of Toronto

POSTPONED

New date & time TBD

Our lab is working to pioneer cell-free technologies to provide sterile and abiotic formats for protein expression, among other applications. Stable at room temperature, these in vitro systems are readily stored, distributed, easily used by scientists and non-scientists alike, and can be activated by simply adding water. In previous work we have demonstrated that this approach can be used to provide on-demand production of antibodies, vaccine antigens; however, the method still required specialized expertise and a well-equipped laboratory.

I will share an update on our effort to extend the cell-free production of custom biologics (antibodies, enzymes), with the goal of making them more accessible to nanomedicine researchers and others. As a proof-of-concept project, we are developing the infrastructure and components to produce the biologic components necessary for the targeted nanoparticle-mediated delivery of re-programming cargo for CAR-T cell-based immunotherapy. While work is ongoing, we are on track to complete our NMIN project in the coming year and have already begun to apply these tools in new applications.

Dr. Keith Pardee is working at the intersection of synthetic biology and human health. His lab is pioneering the development of in vitro devices to host cell-free synthetic gene networks for broad applications in research and human health. Pardee’s research interests include the development of molecular diagnostic tools for communicable diseases like Zika virus, distributed drug manufacturing, and regenerative medicine.

REGISTRATION WILL OPEN WHEN THIS EVENT HAS BEEN RESCHEDULED

Dr. Keith Pardee

The NMIN Lecture Series focuses on the activities and successes of NMIN investigators and/or Network research. These lectures provide opportunities for Network participants and stakeholders to stay up to date with Network research, and promote collaboration between Network labs. Attendance is open to any interested parties.

More lectures are being planned…

Questions: contact Leah Graystone, NMIN Events & HQP Program Coordinator, at: leahgraystone@nanomedicines.ca

NMIN

PAST LECTURES

2021-2022

NMIN

NMIN Lectures

Development & utilization of in vivo systems to optimize lipid nanoparticles for therapeutic genome editing

Dr. Colin Ross

Associate Professor in the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences at the University of British Columbia

Play Video

29 July 2022

12-1 pm Pacific | 3-4 pm Eastern

Genetic diseases are a leading cause of death and disability in Canada with immense economic and societal burdens. Gene therapy has emerged as a means to effectively treat genetic diseases; however, current gene therapies are limited by their high manufacturing costs, the inability to re-dose, and the safety concerns of some viral vectors.

CRISPR genome editing is a new therapeutic approach that aims to directly repair the underlying disease-causing mutations. Conventional CRISPR methods are limited as in vivo therapeutics because they introduce DNA breaks and cause frequent off-target edits. Newer base editors and prime editors overcome the limitations traditional CRISPR genome editing methods because they do not introduce DNA breaks.

However, the delivery of genome editors to affected tissues remains a challenge. Viral vectors, such as AAV, are unsuitable for genome editing because their long expression (years) increases the probability of unintended edits. In contrast, the transient expression (hours-days) of RNA encoding genome editors via nanoparticles is well suited for genome editing, and unlike viral vectors, nanoparticles can be readministered. However, nanoparticle delivery of complex genome editing cargos (large mRNA + small gRNA) remains a challenge, especially to extra-hepatic target tissues such as muscle. To address this, we are developing new ways to safely deliver these new editors using lipid nanoparticles.

To efficiently measure the in vivo effectiveness of genome editor delivery via LNPs, we have developed transgenic mice that carry mutations in reporter genes. Precise gene repair of these mutations produce a functional enzyme that emits light (luminescence) that sensitive imagers can detect to precisely measure the location and extent of gene editing in living animals. We have made progress in our goal towards efficient and safe in vivo genome editing that we will share.

Dr. Colin Ross seeks to incorporate genomics into guiding, optimising, and developing novel therapeutics to improve the safety and effectiveness of medications. His research is also exploring the use of genome sequencing to help diagnose and manage the treatment of rare genetic diseases.

Dr. Colin Ross

The NMIN Lecture Series focuses on the activities and successes of NMIN investigators and/or Network research. These lectures provide opportunities for Network participants and stakeholders to stay up to date with Network research, and promote collaboration between Network labs. Attendance is open to any interested parties.

NMIN

Pieter Cullis Invitational Lecture
Scientific Integrity Series

What has gone wrong with publication practices?

Prof. Dr. Jean-Christophe Leroux


Professor in Drug Formulation & Delivery and Head, the Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH Zürich)

Tuesday 31 May 2022

9-10:15 am PST | 12-1:15 pm EST

As in several other scientific disciplines, pharmaceutical sciences, and in particularly nanomedicine is experiencing a reproducibility crisis [1]. This crisis has multiples roots, and can be in part explained by the use of ever more complex experimental protocols and specialized systems [2], inaccurate or incomplete description of methods employed and lack of rigor in the design of experimental plan.  However, another aspect that should not be ignored, and that possibly contributes to exacerbating this problem is the drift which is currently occurring in the publication practices, where for some groups, sharing scientific findings ceases to be the primary reason for publishing their research findings. Using examples taken mainly from the field of drug delivery, this presentation aims at analyzing the subtle causes that may contribute to the lack of reproducibility of the scientific literature and its impact on the society. It will also provide some possible solutions to disseminate new knowledge in a more reliable fashion.

References:

[1]. Leroux JC, Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2017, 56, 15170-15171.

[2]. Leroux JC, J Control. Release 2018, 278, 140-141.  

Prof. Dr. Jean-Christophe Leroux is a full professor of Drug Formulation and Delivery and head of the Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences at the ETH Zurich, Switzerland. He has made important fundamental and applied contributions to the fields of biomaterials and drug delivery, and has been involved in the development of innovative bio-detoxification systems for the treatment of metabolite disorders. He is a fellow of the AAPS, EURASC and the CRS, and the co-founder of the start-up pharmaceutical companies Versantis AG and Inositec AG.

Prof. Dr. Jean-​Christophe Leroux

ETH Zurich, Switzerland

Also in NMIN’s Scientific Integrity Series:

The role of validation & retraction in upholding scientific integrity

a webinar with
Dr. Ivan Oransky of Retraction Watch

The Pieter Cullis Invitational Lecture series features individuals working at the frontiers of nanomedicines research and innovation and showcases remarkable examples of scientific and commercial progress in the field. 

NMIN

NMIN Lectures

Cancer nanomedicine: Using gold nanoparticles to overcome radiotherapy challenges

Dr. Devika Chithrani

Associate Professor, University of Victoria

Play Video

Friday, 20 May 2022

11:00 am – 12:00 pm PDT | 2:00 – 3:00 pm EDT

Globally, Cancer is the second leading cause of death. In 2018, there were 18.1 million new cases worldwide and 9.5 million cancer-related deaths. By 2040, the number of new cancer cases per year is expected to rise to 29.5 million and the number of cancer-related deaths to 16.4 million. Approximately 50 percent of all cancer patients can benefit from radiotherapy (RT) in the management of their disease. Of these, approximately half present early enough to pursue curative treatment approaches.

The major limitation to reaching a curative RT dose in high-risk (locally advanced) non-metastatic tumors is the high sensitivity to radiation and subsequent damage to the surrounding normal tissues. In an effort towards reducing side effects while increasing the damage to the tumour, targeting of high atomic number materials such as gold nanoparticles (GNPs) as radiosensitizers to the tumour tissue has shown promising results.

Moving forward, understanding of the complex biological system present in and around the tumour is essential for optimizing the use of the radiosensitizing GNPs, as outlined by a consortium of labs, including my own. In this talk, I will discuss the importance of using GNP-based novel strategies to overcome current challenges imposed by the tumour microenvironment.

Dr. Devika Chithrani is an associate professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Victoria, Canada. She was awarded the faculty gold medal and the gold medal for physics when she received her bachelor’s degree (first class honors). To continue her graduate studies, she was awarded a prestigious NSERC Graduate scholarship in materials science and engineering at University of Toronto. Following successful completion of her doctoral work, she was awarded one of the most prestigious awards in Canada, the NSERC PDF, to continue her post-graduate research at the University of Toronto.

Dr. Chithrani now leverages nanotechnology to create innovations that advance the care of cancer patients. She is using gold nanoparticles as a radiation dose enhancer in cancer therapy. This work was featured on the cover of the journal Radiation Research and received the Michael S. Patterson publication award. She has developed three-dimensional tumor models to optimize bio-nano interface in cancer therapy. This work is featured on the cover of the journal Nano-Micro Letters.

Dr. Chithrani is considered one of the leaders in the field of nanotechnology and her publications have received over 10,000 citations over the past 10 years. Her passion is to develop smart nanomaterials to improve exiting cancer therapeutics. She believes that many side effects due to chemotherapy can be reduced by controlled delivery of anticancer drugs using smart nanomaterials.

Dr. Devika Chithrani

The NMIN Lecture Series focuses on the activities and successes of NMIN investigators and/or Network research. These lectures provide opportunities for Network participants and stakeholders to stay up to date with Network research, and promote collaboration between Network labs. Attendance is open to any interested parties.

NMIN

Pieter Cullis Invitational Lecture

Liposomes – Six Decades On: The Old Kid On The Cancer Nanomedicine Block

Dr. Francis Szoka

Professor in the Department of Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences of the University of California San Francisco

Play Video

Wednesday 20 April 2022

10-11:00 am PST | 1-2:00 pm EST

I come before you to praise liposomes… not to bury them.

As we approach the sixtieth anniversary of the first description of a liposome by Alec Bangham, I will briefly reflect upon the reasons for the successes of liposome encapsulated drugs in cancer drug therapy. More relevant to the future, as many others have pointed out, we need to comprehend why liposomes haven’t been more successful clinically and what this implies for the broader research area of nanomedicines.

This presentation will focus on relevant results from our group in three areas: drug encapsulation and release, long circulation, and tissue and tumor penetration. I think there remain challenging, unresolved research opportunities for curious scientists to understand and exploit for improved cancer nanomedicine delivery.

Bangham, A. D.; Horne, R. W. (1964). “Negative Staining of Phospholipids and Their Structural Modification by Surface-Active Agents As Observed in the Electron Microscope“. Journal of Molecular Biology. 8 (5): 660–668.

Dr. Francis Szoka focuses on improving gene, recombinant protein and drug delivery using biophysical, molecular biology and chemical approaches. He and his team have applied biophysical approaches to create methods and tools that are now widely used to manufacture liposomes, polyplexes and lipoplexes. They have extensively investigated the mechanisms of non-viral gene delivery. Their recent efforts in the treatment of cancer involves the design and synthesis of prodrugs and the generation of amorphous nanosized drug particles to improve the bioavailability of sparingly soluble anticancer drugs.

Dr. Francis Szoka

The Pieter Cullis Invitational Lecture series features individuals working at the frontiers of nanomedicines research and innovation and showcases remarkable examples of scientific and commercial progress in the field. 

NMIN

NMIN Lectures

Porphysomes and beyond – the path to clinical translation

Dr. Gang Zheng

Professor, Department of Medical Biophysics, University of Toronto

Play Video

Wednesday, 23 March 2022

10:00 – 11:00 am PDT | 1:00 – 2:00 pm EDT

Porphysomes are liposome-like nanoparticles self-assembled from a single porphyrin-lipid building block that are nontoxic and biodegradable in vivo. These simple building blocks impart inherent multifunctionality to porphysomes for unparalleled theranostic utility (e.g., photothermal, photoacoustic, photodynamic, fluorescence, PET, MRI, and drug delivery). Using the same building blocks, we also created a family of porphyrin supramolecular structures with different sizes, shapes, and functions. Replacing porphyrin-lipid with other dye-lipid analogues such as texaphyrin-lipid resulted in nanotexaphyrins, a new class of radiotheranostic nanomedicine capable of alpha, beta and Auger electron therapies. The porphysome has trod a path towards the clinic for the past ten years, using only academic resources to complete regulatory requirements and pre-clinical validation. The first canine patient study is underway with the first-in-human study to be launched this autumn. The simple, intrinsically theranostic nature of the porphysome epitomizes a “one-for-all” nanomedicine design paradigm and confers exciting clinical promise.

Dr. Gang Zheng is Professor, Department of Medical Biophysics, University of Toronto, cross-appointed to Institute of Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering & the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy & the Institute of Medical Science. He is also Associate Research Director of Princess Margaret Cancer Centre.

His research is currently focused on developing clinically translatable technology platforms to combat cancer. His lab discovered porphysome nanotechnology (Nature Materials 2011), named one of the “top 10 cancer breakthroughs of 2011” by the Canadian Cancer Society. His lab also discovered that on exposure to low-frequency ultrasound, porphyrin microbubbles form nanoparticles that possess the same optical and therapeutic properties as the original microbubble, and can be used simultaneously for imaging and drug delivery (Nature Nano 2015). Dr. Zheng is an Associate Editor for Bioconjugate Chemistry and a Fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering. In 2019, he was awarded a Tier 1 Canada Research Chair in Cancer Nanomedicine.

Dr. Gang Zheng

The NMIN Lecture Series focuses on the activities and successes of NMIN investigators and/or Network research. These lectures provide opportunities for Network participants and stakeholders to stay up to date with Network research, and promote collaboration between Network labs. Attendance is open to any interested parties.

NMIN

NMIN Lectures

Lipidic nanoparticle formulations of a triple adjuvant for intranasal mucosal vaccines

Dr. Ellen K. Wasan

Associate Professor, College of Pharmacy and Nutrition, University of Saskatchewan

Play Video

Friday, 11 February 2022

11:00 am – 12:00 pm PST | 2:00 – 3:00 pm EST

This lecture will describe the advantages of mucosal vaccines for preventable respiratory illness such as pertussis and describe a novel vaccine adjuvant approach for intranasal vaccines. A lipid-based carrier formulation for a triple adjuvant has been designed to enhance the immune response in the nasal environment, using several fabrication methods to modify the macromolecular organization of the particles. Intranasal vaccines using this adjuvant system have been tested in mice to evaluate the immunogenicity of the novel formulations, showing a balanced innate and humoral response. Secreted antigen-specific IgA levels were demonstrated suggesting the potential for mucosal immunity. The need to relate physical properties of the lipidic formulation to in vivo performance will be discussed.

Dr. Ellen K. Wasan, B.S.Pharm., R.Ph., Ph.D., is an Associate Professor in the College of Pharmacy and Nutrition at the University of Saskatchewan. She is part of the Drug Design and Delivery research cluster and teaches in the Doctor of Pharmacy program. Dr. Wasan received her PhD from the University of British Columbia in 1999 and worked as a research scientist at the BC Cancer Research Centre, followed by a faculty position in the Dept. of Basic Health Sciences at the British Columbia Institute of Technology. Her laboratory research is funded by NMIN, the Government of Saskatchewan Agricultural Research Branch, the Saskatchewan Cattlemen’s Association, and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, in collaboration with the Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization (VIDO-InterVac). She is currently Secretary of the Board for the Canada Chapter of the Controlled Release Society, a member of the Canadian Society for Pharmaceutical Sciences and is a practicing community pharmacist.

Dr. Wasan’s research in pharmaceutics has focused on formulation of poorly water-soluble drugs, lipid-based drug and nucleic acid delivery and advanced drug delivery systems such as nanoparticles for applications in cancer and infectious disease. Currently her research group is working on nanoparticle vaccines, oral sustained release polymeric nanoparticles and novel therapies for rheumatic disorders. Her laboratory research is funded by NMIN, the Government of Saskatchewan Agricultural Research Branch, the Saskatchewan Cattlemen’s Association, and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, in collaboration with the Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization (VIDO-InterVac).

Dr. Ellen K. Wasan

The NMIN Lecture Series focuses on the activities and successes of NMIN investigators and/or Network research. These lectures provide opportunities for Network participants and stakeholders to stay up to date with Network research, and promote collaboration between Network labs. Attendance is open to any interested parties.

NMIN

Pieter Cullis Invitational Lecture Series

Designing nanomaterials for therapeutics and biosensing

Dr. Molly Stevens

Professor of Biomedical Materials and Regenerative Medicine in the Department of Materials and the Department of Bioengineering, and Research Director for Biomedical Material Sciences at the Institute of Biomedical Engineering, Imperial College London

Play Video

Tuesday 28 September 2021

10-11:00 am PDT | 1-2:00 pm EDT

This talk provided an overview of recent work by Dr. Molly Stevens and the Stevens Group at Imperial College London using designer bio-nanomaterials for biosensing and controlled delivery.

Dr. Stevens and her Group are exploiting the sensing capabilities of nanoparticles to engineer detection assays for infectious diseases such as HIV, Ebola, tuberculosis and COVID-19, and they are integrating these capabilities with smartphone technology to enable patient self-monitoring, geographical tagging and epidemic surveillance. They are also engineering complex 3D architectures and cell interfacing nanoneedles for multiplexed intracellular biosensing and modulation of biological processes. Their in-depth research on liposomal platforms using neutron scattering is informing the choice of lipid composition and formulation method for biological applications. For example, they have tailored lipid-based nanocarriers for ultrasound-triggered hydrogelation to enable in vivo remote remote-triggered drug delivery.

In this lecture, Dr. Stevens discussed how the versatile technologies she is developing with the Stevens Group can be applied to transformative biosensing, regenerative medicine and new therapeutic approaches.

Dr. Molly Stevens

Imperial College London

Molly Stevens is Professor of Biomedical Materials and Regenerative Medicine in the Department of Materials and the Department of Bioengineering, and the Research Director for Biomedical Material Sciences at the Institute of Biomedical Engineering, at Imperial College London.

The Stevens Group is a large, multidisciplinary research group of students, postdocs and research fellows who use innovative bioengineering approaches to pursue their vision of solving key problems in regenerative medicine and biosensing. The Group’s research spans drug delivery, bioactive materials, tissue engineering, biosensing, materials characterisation, soft robotics and the interface between living and non-living matter, and is underpinned by collaborations with data scientists and molecular dynamics experts.

Dr. Stevens is Fellow of eight UK Societies including the Royal Society and the Royal Academy of Engineering. In 2019, she was elected Foreign Member of the National Academy of Engineering (USA). She holds numerous leadership positions, including: Director of the UK Regenerative Medicine Platform “Smart Materials” Hub; Deputy Director of the EPSRC-funded Interdisciplinary Research Centre in Early-Warning Sensing Systems for Infectious Diseases; Associate Director of the British Heart Foundation Centre of Research Excellence; previous member of the World Economic Forum Global Future Council for Advanced Materials; Scientist Trustee of the National Gallery (London, UK); and Associate Editor of ACS Nano and previous reviewing editor at Science.

Dr. Stevens has received over 30 prestigious awards, including the Acta Biomaterialia Silver Medal (2020), Surfaces and Interfaces Award (Royal Society of Chemistry 2019), Rosalind Franklin Medal and Prize (Institute of Physics, 2018), the Harrison Medal (Royal Pharmaceutical Society, 2017) and the Imperial College President’s Award and Medal for Outstanding Research Team (2016).

The Pieter Cullis Invitational Lecture series features individuals working at the frontiers of nanomedicines research and innovation and showcases remarkable examples of scientific and commercial progress in the field. 

NMIN

NMIN Lectures

Lipid and RNA Nanomedicines to Control Bleeding and Thrombosis

Dr. Christian Kastrup

Associate Professor in the Michael Smith Laboratories and Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology at the University of British Columbia; member of the Centre for Blood Research and the School of Biomedical Engineering

Play Video

Tuesday 21 September 2021

10-11:00 am PDT | 1-2:00 pm EDT

Blood coagulation is necessary to stop bleeds, but an imbalance of the enzymes that form, inhibit and degrade blood clots can lead to bleeding disorders, failure to stop severe hemorrhage after injury, or formation of thromboses. Gene therapy, using RNA and lipid nanoparticles, can be used to modulate the concentration of these enzymes and correct any imbalance. This talk highlights the applicability of RNA and lipid nanoparticles to control the expression of endogenous and exogenous proteins in the liver and in platelets, toward the goal of creating useful therapies for trauma, rare bleeding disorders, and thrombosis.

Dr. Christian Kastrup

Dr. Christian Kastrup did his postdoctoral fellowship in at MIT, specializing in engineering biomaterials for cardiovascular drug delivery. He received his PhD at the University of Chicago, specializing in chemical biology, microfluidics, and blood coagulation. His lab at UBC utilizes biochemical engineering to solve problems related to hemostasis and hemorrhage. They investigate, utilize, and mimic the biochemistry and biophysical dynamics of blood coagulation to create innovative materials that perform new functions inside of blood vessels, and work to develop treatments for severe hemorrhage.

Dr. Kastrup has received many accolades, the most recent being the Sir Major Banting Award from the True Patriot Love Foundation. He is the Chief Scientific Officer of CoMotion Drug Delivery Systems, Inc., which is working to develop hemostatic agents for severe combat and surgical hemorrhage.

The NMIN Lecture Series focuses on the activities and successes of NMIN investigators and/or Network research. These lectures provide opportunities for Network participants and stakeholders to stay up to date with Network research, and promote collaboration between Network labs. Attendance is open to any interested parties.

NMIN

NMIN Lecture Series

Nano-delivery of Novel Inhibitors of DNA Repair for Enhanced Cancer Therapy:
Making a case for the use of nano-medicine in the drug development process

Dr. Afsaneh Lavasanifar

Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Alberta; Scientific Chief Officer and Vice President, Meros Polymers Inc.

Play Video

Nanomedicine is commonly developed to either correct the undesired effects of therapeutic agents already in clinic or enhance the delivery of challenging molecules, such as proteins and genes, to their cellular targets. In this project, our aim is to harness the benefits of nanomedicine in the drug development process towards making “new drugs” for cancer therapy.

In this context, polymer as well as lipid-based nano-delivery systems for the solubilization and delivery of new small molecule inhibitors of a DNA repair enzyme, known as polynucleotide kinase 3′-phosphatase (PNKP), have been developed. Our preclinical assessments, so far, have provided evidence for the success of a polymer-based nano-formulation of a hit PNKP inhibitor, A83B4C63, as novel synthetically lethal nano-therapeutics in the treatment of colorectal cancers (CRC) deficient in Phosphatase and TENsin homolog deleted on chromosome 10 (PTEN). Successful use of this formulation as a radiosensitizer has also been shown in wildtype PTEN positive CRC models. Research on the evaluation of the biological activity of a liposomal formulation of another “hit” PNKP inhibitor, A83B47C63, and its head-to-head comparison with polymeric nanoparticles of A83B4C63 is ongoing.

Dr. Afsaneh Lavasanifar

Dr. Afsaneh Lavasanifar is Professor in the Pharmaceutical Sciences division of the Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences at the University of Alberta. She is also the Scientific Chief Officer and Vice President of Meros Polymers Inc., a spinoff company established on basis of technology developed her lab.

Her research is focused on the design and development of polymer-based delivery systems that can increase solubility, modify the pharmacokinetic pattern, reduce toxicity and increase the efficacy of different therapeutic agents. The ongoing research projects in her laboratory include development of novel polymeric nano-carriers and stimulus responsive gels for application in cancer chemo and immunotherapy or deliver of anti-inflammatory agents. She is an inventor in 5 patent/patent applications on novel polymer-based formulations for drug and siRNA delivery.

Dr. Lavasanifar is the Associate Editor of Molecular Pharmaceutics and a member of the Editorial Board of Materials Sciences and Applications and Iranian Polymer Journal.

The NMIN Lecture Series focuses on the activities and successes of NMIN investigators and/or Network research. These lectures provide opportunities for Network participants and stakeholders to stay up to date with Network research, and promote collaboration between Network labs. Attendance is open to any interested parties.

NMIN

NMIN Lecture Series

The nanoparticle biological identity & protein corona: Challenges, opportunities, & future research directions

Dr. Warren Chan

Professor, Canada Research Chair in Nanobioengineering & Director, Institute of Biomedical Engineering (BME), University of Toronto

Monday 12 April 2021

1:00 – 2:00 pm PDT | 4:00 – 5:00 pm EDT

Dr. Chan will discuss the role of the biological identity (e.g. protein corona) in mediating cellular interactions. The presentation will delve in the current state of research and reflect on future research directions and commercial opportunities for this burgeoning area of nanomedicine.

Dr. Chan’s Integrated Nanotechnology & Biomedical Sciences Laboratory is interested in studying and understanding the proteomic and genomic changes associated with abnormal cells (e.g., cancer cells or virally-infected cells) and tissues. His lab aims to elucidate the cell’s molecular dynamics by using recent developments in nanotechnology (e.g., inorganic nanostructures), microtechnology (e.g., micro-electromechanical systems and capillary flow systems), and molecular engineering (e.g., phage-display) as well as engineering new instrumentation and techniques to address biological questions. Dr. Chan and colleagues seek a fundamental understanding of molecular processes with technology developments toward the designing of novel diagnostic schemes and therapeutic strategies.

Dr. Warren Chan

Warren Chan, PhD, is Director of the Institute of Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering; Distinguished Professor of Nanobioengineering; and Canada Research Chair in Nanobioengineering – all at the University of Toronto. He is also an NMIN Principal Investigator in Theme 3: Diagnostics.

The NMIN Lecture Series focuses on the activities and successes of NMIN investigators and/or Network research. These lectures provide opportunities for Network participants and stakeholders to stay up to date with Network research, and promote collaboration between Network labs. Attendance is open to any interested parties.

NMIN

Pieter Cullis Invitational Lecture Series

Biomaterials for the Delivery
of Nucleic Acids, Genome Editing Tools and Cells

Dr. Daniel G. Anderson

Professor of Chemical Engineering, Institute for Medical Engineering and Science, Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research, and the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Science and Technology at MIT

Daniel G. Anderson is a Professor at the Massachusettes Institute of Technology (MIT) in the Department of Chemical Engineering, Institute for Medical Engineering and Science, Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research, and the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Science and Technology.

The research done in Prof. Anderson’s laboratory is focused on developing new materials for medicine. He has pioneered the development of smart biomaterials, and his work has led to advances in a range of areas, including medical devices, cell therapy, drug delivery, gene therapy and material science.

Prof. Anderson received a B.A. in mathematics and biology from the University of California at Santa Cruz and a Ph.D. in molecular genetics from the University of California at Davis. His work has resulted in the publication of over 400 papers, patentsand patent applications. These advances have led products that have been commercialized or are in clinical development, as well as to the foundation of companies in the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and consumer products space.

Dr. Anderson is a founder of Living Proof, Olivo Labs, Crispr Therapeutics (CRSP), Sigilon Therapeutics, Verseau Therapeutics, Orna, and VasoRx.

Dr. Daniel G. Anderson

The Pieter Cullis Invitational Lecture series features individuals working at the frontiers of nanomedicines research and innovation and showcases remarkable examples of scientific and commercial progress in the field. 

NMIN

NMIN Lecture Series

If I Wasn’t a Scientific Entrepreneur

We Wouldn’t Have Enabled the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine

Dr. Pieter Cullis

Scientific Director & CEO, The NanoMedicines Innovation Network

Professor, Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, The University of British Columbia

Tuesday 23 February 2021

9 – 10:00 am PST | 12 – 1:00 pm EST

During the inaugural NMIN Lecture, Dr. Pieter Cullis recounted the history of the research that led to the lipid nanoparticle (LNP) delivery system enabling the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine, and discussed why being a scientific entrepreneur was vital to this success.

He also spoke about future opportunities and challenges in nanomedicines, and suggested ways Canada might remain at the forefront of this field.

Dr. Pieter Cullis

The NMIN Lecture Series focuses on the activities and successes of NMIN investigators and/or Network research. These lectures provide opportunities for Network participants and stakeholders to stay up to date with Network research, and promote collaboration between Network labs. Attendance is open to any interested parties.

Questions: contact Leah Graystone, NMIN Events & HQP Program Coordinator, at: leahgraystone@nanomedicines.ca