Engineering Targeted Therapeutics for Breast Cancer
Thursday, January 26, 2017
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Fitzpatrick Center Schiciano Auditorium Side B
Debra Auguste, Ph.D., Professor of Chemical Engineering, Northeastern University
Abstract: Cells sense changes in their environment and respond by altering their gene expression. I investigate how cells manipulate membrane proteins, which has profound effects on disease progression. Cells orchestrate the density of proteins and lipids to govern adhesion and migration. From this knowledge, one can engineer drug delivery vehicles that complement the molecular patterns observed on cells to achieve strong, cooperative binding. I have employed these strategies in a model system of endothelial inflammation and in breast cancer metastasis. My lab has identified a new target and biomarker for triple negative breast cancer, examined the role of ligand/receptor cell adhesion by atomic force microscopy, and synthesized targeted drug delivery vehicles that demonstrate that nanoparticle ligand surface density alters gene expression. The basis for the targeted drug delivery platform lies at the intersections of biology, engineering, and medicine. We have used these vehicles to identify new strategies in the delivery of molecules and nucleic acids.Bio: Debra Auguste, PhD is a Professor of Chemical Engineering at Northeastern University, prior to which she was at the City College of New York and Harvard University. She was trained as a Post-Doctoral Associate at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology under Institute Professor Robert Langer.