Day 1 :
Institute for Integrative Nanosciences, Germany
Time : 09:30 - 10:00
Oliver G. Schmidt is the Director of the Institute for Integrative Nanosciences at the Leibniz IFW Dresden, Germany. His interests bridge across several disciplines, ranging from nanomaterials and nanoelectronics to microfluidics, microrobotics and biomedical applications. He has received several awards: the Otto-Hahn Medal from the Max-Planck-Society in 2000, the Philip-Morris Research Award in 2002, the Carus-Medal from the German Academy of Natural Scientists Leopoldina in 2005, and the International Dresden Barkhausen Award in 2013. Most recently, he was awarded the Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz-Prize 2018 of the German Research Foundation. The Leibniz-Prize is Germany’s most important research award and recognizes his outstanding work in the investigation, manufacturing and innovative application of functional nanostructures.
Microtubular nanomembrane devices (MNDs) with outstanding properties are self-assembled into fully functional and integrative three-dimensional architectures. This makes them attractive for a broad range of applications and scientific research fields ranging from energy storage to reproduction technologies. MNDs are used to construct ultra-compact energy storage devices as well as ultra-sensitive advanced electronic circuitry, nanophotonic cavities, sensors and optofluidic components towards the implementation of a lab-in-a-tube system. They are also useful to study basic mechanisms of single cancer and stem cell migration, growth and mitosis in realistic 3D confined environments. Off-chip applications include biomimetic microelectronics for regenerative cuff implants and the development of hybrid microbiorobotic motors for paradigm shifting reproduction technologies. Cellular cyborg machinery is put forth for novel schemes in targeted drug delivery and cancer treatment.
Imperial College London, UK
Keynote: Bio-inspired anionic polymers as a platform for designing novel nanoscale intracellular drug delivery systems
Time : 10:00 - 10:30
Rongjun Chen obtained his MSc Degree in Materials Science from Tsinghua University (P R China) in 2003; pursued PhD Degree at Cambridge University (UK) during the period 2003-2007, with focus on polymer drug delivery. He carried out his Postdoctoral Research at Cambridge University first on lyophilisation of pharmaceuticals and then on manufacture of clinical-grade lentiviral vectors for gene therapy during the period October 2006 to September 2009. In May 2013, he moved to Imperial College London as a Lecturer and is currently a Senior Lecturer since 2016. From October 2009 to April 2013, he started his independent academic career by taking a tenure-track faculty position as the Group Leader and BHRC Senior Translational Research Fellow at the University of Leeds. His research interests focuses on biomaterials, nanomedicine, drug delivery and cell therapy.
It remains a major challenge to effectively deliver therapeutic agents, in particular macromolecules, through negatively charged lipid membrane barriers. It is the most limiting step preventing successful implementation of macromolecule-based cell modification and intracellular therapies. This is due to endosomal entrapment of macromolecules and their degradation in lysosomes. Many researchers have used cationic delivery systems to address this challenge. However, the positive charge could cause some issues, such as unfavorable biodistribution, rapid renal clearance and high non-specific cytotoxicity. This presentation presents an alternative delivery strategy based on an anionic drug delivery platform. It covers our recent efforts on design and synthesis of novel anionic, viral-peptide-mimicking, pH-responsive, metabolite-derived polymers, and evaluation of their use in intracellular drug delivery in vitro and in vivo. Strict control over the size, structure, hydrophobicity-hydrophilicity balance and sequence of the polymers can effectively manipulate interactions with lipid membrane, cell and tissue models. It has been demonstrated that the biomimetic polymers can successfully traverse the extracellular matrix in three-dimensional multicellular spheroids, and also enable efficient loading of a wide range of macromolecules into the cell interior. This can represent a versatile delivery platform, suitable for targeted therapeutic delivery and cell therapy for treatment of various diseases including but not limited to cancer.
King’s College London, UK
Keynote: Progress in aligning nanomedicine with precision therapeutic approaches for the treatment of chronic diseases
Time : 10:30 - 11:00
Andrew D Miller is well known as a leading Chemist Expert in the understanding and exploitation of molecular mechanisms in biology. The overall goal of his academic research has been and continues to be the design and creation of advanced therapeutics and diagnostics that address unmet medical need in the treatment of chronic diseases (such as cancer, diabetes, pain and some infectious diseases). From 1990-2010, he was a Member of academic staff in the Chemistry Department of Imperial College London (UK) where he founded the Imperial College Genetic Therapies Centre (GTC) in 1998, and became Full Professor of Organic Chemistry and Chemical Biology in 2002. Since 2010, he has been affiliated with King’s College London (UK) and more recently with the Veterinary Research Institute (VRI) in Brno, Czech Republic, where he is the Director of OPVVV Project FIT and its Key Foreign Scientist (KFS). He Co-Founded KP Therapeutics Ltd in 2016 with a pipeline of Precision Therapeutic Approaches (PTAs) in discovery & development for the diagnosis and treatment of chronic diseases. He has currently published nearly 250 papers, book chapters and alike, including at least 26 patents and patent applications. He is also Principal Writer of the first textbook of chemical biology (“Essentials of Chemical Biology”, John Wiley & Sons.
Precision Medicine is considered by many to be a necessary future for the treatment for all diseases. Fundamentally, this can be divided into two subsections, namely personalized medicine and precision therapeutics. With personalized medicine, the aim is to understand the genetic, immunological and/or metabolic individuality of patients in order to match individual patients with the most appropriate active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) for treatment of their particular disease(s). With precision therapeutics, the aim is to take control of the delivery of APIs to disease target tissue, by means of nanomedicine, and/or make use of select APIs that have extreme target specificity. The focus of this lecture is in precision therapeutics, as demonstrated by four worked examples of precision therapeutic approaches (PTAs) that are currently being taken forward in my laboratories and the laboratories of key collaborators for the treatment of chronic diseases. The chronic diseases of interest are chronic pain, epilepsy, cancer, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) /diabetes type II, and infectious diseases such as influenza, Zika virus and HIV. By way of example, the right-hand side panel outlines a PTA for the treatment of cancer. In effect, a combination of bio-imaging and the application of image-guided targeting enable anti-cancer drug delivery nanoparticles to accumulate in a tumour lesion of choice and no obvious place elsewhere in the body. Accumulated nanoparticles may then release these anti-cancer drugs for local activity against tumour tissue saving other body tissues from unwanted exposure to these otherwise cytotoxic drugs. Implementation of such a PTA in the clinic could radically improve patient chemotherapy outcomes whilst reducing both required drug doses and side effects to an unprecedented degree. Such potential step changes in disease treatment explain why precision therapeutics should be an indispensable part of future medicine.