University of Birmingham, UK
Title: Carbon-based nanomedicines as anticancer torjan horses
Hanene Ali-Boucetta has completed her Master of Pharmacy degree from UCL School of Pharmacy. He has pursued her PhD at Nanomedicine Laboratory at UCL School of Pharmacy investigating the pharmacokinetics and toxicology of carbon nanotubes and their development into effective nano-vectors for cancer therapeutics under the supervision of Kostas Kostarelos. She was awarded the prestigious C W Maplethorpe Research and Teaching Postdoctoral Fellowship from the University of London. She has joined the School of Pharmacy at University of Birmingham as a Lecturer in pharmaceutical Nanoscience. She is leading the Nanomedicine and Drug Delivery Laboratory and her team is working on the development of novel nano-delivery systems for the treatment of cancer, neurodegenerative disorders and microbial infections. She has published numerous peer-reviewed articles, reviews and book chapters.
Carbon-based nanomaterials have attracted a lot of attention in recent years because of their unique and extraordinary properties which could be exploited for therapeutic, diagnostic and theranostic purposes. Functionalised carbon nanotubes (ƒCNTs) in particular have shown their ability to deliver therapeutic molecules ranging from small anticancer molecules to macromolecules as they are uptaken by cells via an energy independent mechanism.
While chemotherapy is still the main therapeutic modality in the treatment of cancer, there is always the issue of side effects and relapse after treatment. ƒCNTs can be engineered to specifically target cancer cells, increase the drug payload inside them and reduce multidrug resistance. Carbon nanotubes can therefore act as anticancer Trojan horses.
Herein we will discuss the state of the art of ƒCNTs as cancer therapeutics and their potential for the delivery of cancer therapeutics in 2D cell monolayers, 3D tumour spheroids and in vivo models. We will further highlight the gaps in the field which needs to be addressed before the translational move of these nanomaterials into the clinic.