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Death Spikes and Healthy Bumps: Nanostars for drug delivery
16 May 2022 @ 12:00 pm – 12:30 pm
William Morton, Department of Materials
Venue: G20, Royal School of Mines
Abstract: Understanding how nanoparticles navigate biological barriers is crucial for determining their use as drug delivery agents. Cellular uptake has thus far been the main metric of determining the design of a successful nanoparticle. A mechanistic understanding of how nanoparticles enter cells, and what the limitations are, has been thoroughly developed over the past decade. However, a particle class that has been overlooked in this study is nanostars (nano-urchins, virus-like nanoparticles, etc.). Using a specialised experimental data set, the theoretical work presented demonstrates different pathways for diffusion of nanostars, compared to nanospheres. Specifically, interest lies in densely packed cellular environments, similar to those found in the blood brain barrier. Geometrical effects alone can promote drug delivery in difficult to reach areas of the body by avoiding endocytosis in densely packed areas.