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Cancer therapy using unique imaging, delivery system focus of NSF CAREER Award
Date:3/29/2010

Tech faculty in 2006, earned her doctorate in biomedical engineering from the University of Texas at Austin (UT) in 2005 where she remained as a post doctoral fellow jointly appointed in the biomedical engineering department and Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences.

Her CAREER award, in part, is a continuation of work at UT on characterization of injury and heat shock protein (HSP) expression in prostate cancer cells and tumors in response to elevated temperatures associated with water bath and laser heating. Knowledge of the HSP expression distribution in tumors allows the identification of tumor regions with a high likelihood of survival and recurrence. Therefore, therapeutic procedures can be modified to optimize HSP expression to enhance treatment outcome.

Based on these experimental measurements she developed novel computational treatment planning models to predict the temperature, HSP expression, and injury at the cellular and tissue level in response to laser therapy. Rylander's goal with her $400,000 CAREER award is to ultimately develop more effective and selective laser cancer therapies by incorporating novel nanoparticles to enhance laser based thermal and chemical treatments.

With her holey scaffold design, she will be able to measure dynamic nanoparticle mass transport, temperature, cell viability, HSP expression, and reactive oxygen species (ROS) production in real-time within an in vitro tumor in a bioreactor or an in vivo tumor within a mouse. She will use a variety of nanoparticles including carbon nanotubes, novel embodiments of carbon nanotubes and fullerenes, and carbon nanohorns in combination with laser irradiation.

By analyzing the tumor's response to varying nanoparticle types, delivery methods, and laser parameters, Rylander expects to be able to create a multi-component, treatment planning computational model for nanoparticle-medicated laser therapy that can be used by clinicians to d
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Contact: Lynn Nystrom
tansy@vt.edu
540-231-4371
Virginia Tech
Source:Eurekalert  

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