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Biodegradable polymers show promise for improving treatment of acute inflammatory diseases
Date:8/20/2008

r oral drug delivery because they can survive the stomach conditions before they release their contents in the intestines," noted Murthy.

Murthy's group is also examining the use of polyketals to treat acute liver failure a condition when the liver stops functioning because macrophages in the liver create reactive oxygen species. One treatment is the delivery of superoxide dismutase, an enzyme that detoxifies superoxide. Incorporating the enzyme inside a polyketal poly(cyclohexane-1,4-diyl acetone dimethylene ketal) allows the enzyme to be released very quickly in an acidic environment.

"Patients with acute liver failure need drugs as soon as possible or else they'll die," said Murthy. "We've tailored the polyketal's hydrolysis rates to deliver the drug in one or two days."

Nick Crisp, professor of microbiology and immunology at the University of Rochester Medical Center, and Robert Pierce, currently head of anatomic pathology at Schering-Plough Biopharma Schering-Plough Biopharma and formerly of the University of Rochester Medical Center, are collaborating on this project. Georgia Tech, Emory and the University of Rochester have filed three patent applications on the polyketal drug delivery system.

To treat other illnesses, it may be necessary to deliver proteins to a diseased organ. In a presentation on August 18, Georgia Tech researchers described such a method, which was developed by Murthy, Michael Davis, an assistant professor in the Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering, and graduate student Jay Sy.

"Delivering proteins inside microparticles has been limited because getting the protein into the microparticles required organic solvents that frequently destroyed the proteins," explained Murthy. "To overcome this problem, we developed a method of simply immobilizing the protein on the surface of the microparticles."

The researchers incorporated a nitrilotriacetic acid-lipid conjugate into the pol
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Contact: Abby Vogel
avogel@gatech.edu
404-385-3364
Georgia Institute of Technology Research News
Source:Eurekalert  

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