21 April 2017:
A new paper from CNBP researchers (lead author Wenjie Chen pictured) reports on the design of a new light-triggerable liposome. The work has just been published in the journal ‘Molecular Therapy: Nucleic Acid’ and is accessible online.
Journal: Molecular Therapy: Nucleic Acid.
Title: Light-triggerable liposomes for enhanced endo/lysosomal escape and gene silencing in PC12 cells.
Authors: Wenjie Chen, Wei Deng, Ewa M. Goldys.
Abstract: Liposomes are an effective gene/drug delivery system, widely used in biomedical applications including gene therapy and chemotherapy. Here we designed a photo-responsive liposome (lipVP) loaded with a photosensitizer verteporfin (VP). This photosensitizer is clinically approved for photodynamic therapy (PDT). LipVP was employed as a DNA carrier for pituitary adenylyl cyclase-activating polypeptide (PACAP) receptor 1 (PAC1R) gene knockdown in PC12 cells. This has been done by incorporating PAC1R antisense oligonucleotides inside the lipVP cavity. Cells which have taken up the lipVP were exposed to light from a UV light source. As a result of this exposure, reactive oxygen species (ROS) were generated from VP, destabilising the endo/lysosomal membranes and enhancing the liposomal release of antisense DNA into the cytoplasm. Endo/lysosomal escape of DNA was documented at different time points based on quantitative analysis of colocalization between fluorescently labelled DNA and endo/lysosomes. The released antisense oligonucleotides were found to silence PAC1R mRNA. The efficiency of this photo-induced gene silencing was demonstrated by a 74 ± 5% decrease in PAC1R fluorescence intensity. Following the light-induced DNA transfer into cells, cell differentiation with exposure to two kinds of PACAP peptides was observed to determine the cell phenotypic change after PAC1R gene knockdown.
2 February 2017:
A new publication from CNBP researchers Wei Deng (pictured), Sandhya Clement and Ewa Goldys indicates that gold-loaded liposomes incorporating photosensitizers may serve as improved agents in photodynamic therapy and chemotherapy. The work has just been reported in the International Journal of Nanomedicine and is accessible online.
Journal: International Journal of Nanomedicine.
Title: Light-triggered liposomal cargo delivery platform incorporating photosensitizers and gold nanoparticles for enhanced singlet oxygen generation and increased cytotoxicity
Authors: Zofia Kautzka, Sandhya Clement, Ewa M Goldys and Wei Deng.
Abstract: We developed light-triggered liposomes incorporating 3–5 nm hydrophobic gold
nanoparticles and Rose Bengal (RB), a well-known photosensitizer used for photodynamic
therapy. Singlet oxygen generated by these liposomes with 532 nm light illumination was
characterized for varying the molar ratio of lipids and gold nanoparticles while keeping
the amount of RB constant. Gold nanoparticles were found to enhance the singlet oxygen
generation rate, with a maximum enhancement factor of 1.75 obtained for the molar ratio of hydrogenated soy l-α-phosphatidylcholine:1,2-dioleoyl-sn-glycero-3-hosphoethanolamineN-(hexanoylamine): gold of 57:5:17 compared with liposomes loaded with RB alone. The experimental results could be explained by the local electric field enhancement caused by gold nanoparticles. We further assessed cellular cytotoxicity of gold-loaded liposomes by encapsulating an antitumor drug, doxorubicin (Dox); such Dox-loaded liposomes were applied to human colorectal cancer cells (HCT116) and exposed to light. Gold-loaded liposomes containing RB and Dox where Dox release was triggered by light were found to exhibit higher cytotoxicity compared with the liposomes loaded with RB and Dox alone. Our results indicate that goldloaded liposomes incorporating photosensitizers may serve as improved agents in photodynamic therapy and chemotherapy.
24 November 2016:
In this latest paper, CNBP researchers (lead author Wei Deng pictured left) developed PLGA nanocomposites by incorporating a photosensitizer, verteporfin and gold nanoparticles into the polymeric matrix and utilised them for enhanced photodynamic therapy of cancer cells.
Journal: RSC Advances.
Title: PLGA nanocomposites loaded with verteporfin and gold nanoparticles for enhanced photodynamic therapy of cancer cells.
Authors: Wei Deng, Zofia Kautzka, Wenjie Chen and Ewa M Goldys.
Abstract: In this paper, PLGA nanocomposites were developed by incorporating a photosensitizer, verteporfin and gold nanoparticles into the polymeric matrix and utilised for enhanced photodynamic therapy of cancer cells. Both enhanced fluorescence and O2 generation from verteporfin were observed in this new formulation under both 425 nm LED and 405 nm laser illumination. A maximum enhancement factor of 2.5 for fluorescence and 1.84 for O2 generation was obtained when the molar ratio of gold : VP was 5:1 and excited at 425 nm, compared with PLGA doped with verteporfin alone. The experiment results could be explained by the local electric field enhancement of gold nanoparticles. Furthermore, improved therapeutic efficacy in human pancreatic cancer cells, PANC-1, was also demonstrated by using this new formulation following light exposure, indicating the utility of these nanocomposites for enhanced photodynamic therapy.
The paper is accessible online.
28 January 2016:
CNBP researchers have established that a therapeutic dose of X-rays, in combination with CeF3 nanoparticles, can produce enough singlet oxygen molecules to be effective in photodynamic therapy. The finding has been reported in the journal Scientific Reports, published online today.
The complete research paper is available for download, from the Nature Publishing Group web site. A CNBP media release has also been produced.
January 2015: Scientific Publication:
Bright, water-soluble CeF3 photo-, cathodo-, and X-ray luminescent nanoparticles;
Sandhya Clement,Wei Deng,Krystyna Drozdowicz-Tomsia, Deming Liu, Cameron Zachreson, Ewa M. Goldys
Journal of Nanoparticle Research; January 2015, 17:7
16 December 2014 :Science Communication workshop.
“If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.” – Albert Einstein.
On December 15-16th, 9 CNBP ECRs from University of Adelaide, RMIT University, Macquarie University and SAHMRI attended a science communication workshop at the Questacon workshop (Canberra) and were taught the importance of translating their research into lay terms. More specifically, explaining concepts such as the use of nanoparticles for targeted drug therapy to an 8 year old. Its harder than you think and involves the art of scaffolding; i.e. simplifying a concept by using analogies.
The most interactive and fun session of the workshop involved us creating models and physical demonstrations of our research and included us all running around the Questacon workshop to explain current, throwing paper at people as a demonstration of drug delivery, different coloured glow sticks as an analogy for the use of nanoparticles/probes to diagnose pain and the use of lots and lots of velcro and hot glue guns to make “up-scaled” nanoparticles. Think Playschool for scientists.
CNBP were proud to be sponsors of this professional development workshop which was developed by The ARC Centre of Excellence for Electromaterials Science, in partnership with the ARC Centre of Excellence in Convergent Bio-Nano Science and Technology and the ARC Centre of Excellence in Nanoscale BioPhotonics.
The workshop was designed to teach participants how to put their best foot forward in media interviews, community talks and scientific presentations.
12 December 2014: They just could not stop talking!
Finishing 2014 on a high note the Macquarie CNBP node organized a CNBP-themed MQ BioFocus Research Conference on 10 December.
An ECR-led Conference Committee comprising Dr Wei Deng, Ms K. Drozdowicz-Tomsia, and Dr Varun Sreenivasan put together an exciting program of talks and posters, covering disciplines from medicine to laser physics.
Rarely have we seen more lively discussions!
The meeting was attended by 70 staff and students from CNBP and Macquarie MQ BioFocus Research Centre led by Professor Ewa Goldys (Deputy Director, CNBP).
CNBP Associate Investigators (pictured above) A/Prof Igor Aharonovich (right) and Andrei Zvyagin (left) have presented their research.
MQ BioFocus Research Centre was established in 2010 and it laid the foundation for the CNBP node at Macquarie.
1 November 2014: Summary scholarships for Undergraduates
Mr Dean Southwood and Ms Claudia Cammarata have received Merit Scholar Research Scholarships to work with with CNBP researchers Helen Deng and Prof Ewa Goldys on the project “Liposome nanoparticles for photodynamic therapy of cancer cells”.
13 October 2014: Time Gated Luminescence
Practical Implementation, Characterization and Applications of a Multi-Colour Time-Gated Luminescence Microscope
Authors: Lixin Zhang, Xianlin Zheng, Wei Deng, Yiqing Lu, Severine Lechevallier, Zhiqiang Ye, Ewa M. Goldys, Judith M. Dawes, James A. Piper, Jingli Yuan, Marc Verelst & Dayong Jin
For the article see: Scientific Reports 4,: 6597
1 October 2014: Publication
Optogenetics, the intersection between physics and neuroscience: Light stimulation of neurons in physiological conditions Wei Deng , Ewa M. Goldys , Melissa MJ Farnham , Paul M. Pilowsky
American Journal of Physiology – Regulatory, Integrative and Comparative Physiology Published 1 October 2014 Vol. no. , DOI:10.1152/ajpregu.00072.2014
The Abstract can be viewed on PubMed here