Metastatic cancer is responsible for 90 percent of cancer deaths. The promise of nanomedicines for the treatment of disseminated tumors is the ability to target therapies directly to disease sites, avoiding toxic side effects by preventing accumulation in healthy tissues. We are synthesizing new nanoparticle drug delivery systems to specifically target metastatic tumors. We collaborate with cancer biologists and clinicians to translate these therapies to the bedside.
My laboratory is also developing nanoscale sensors to detect cancer at its earliest stages. Using novel nanomaterials with unique optical properties, we are making it easier to identify disease biomarkers within the body, permitting detection before symptoms arise. In addition, these nanotechnologies allow the measurement of important molecules within live cells and tissues, allowing biologists to ask unprecedented questions and offering new tools to accelerate biomedical research.