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Alexandra Vaideanu

Despite constantly updated and optimised treatments, current therapies for glioblastoma multiforme have not been successful in increasing the median survival of patients which is approximately 14 months after diagnosis.

This research is aimed at developing a nanotechnology which can efficiently target and kill glioma tumour cells, going across the blood-brain-barrier, firstly in vivo in a xenograft mouse model.

The conceptual model of the nanomedicine acting as a three way therapy described herein is based on a gold nanoparticle conjugate, coated with a tumour homing peptide iRGD for targeting and cis-platin drug which induces cell death, which due to the radiosensitization effect also enhances the yield of apoptosis by radiotherapy.

Previous work in our group has proven in vitro a synergistic effect of chemotherapy and radiotherapy via a 50- nm spherical gold nanoparticle coated with cis-platin, in eradicating tumour cell populations. However, it was shown that the surface size of these is not sufficient for a double peptide-drug conjugate. We aim to increase the surface area and use this system in an in vivo study based on a xenograft mouse model to show enhanced uptake in the brain and increased yield of tumour cell death with reference to controls.

Scheme of radiosensitazation of gold nanoparticles and chemotherapy with cis-platin, Sonali Setua, PhD. Thesis, submitted Feb. 2014