Cancer is still a major societal challenge, as reflected by the Horizon's Europe mission on cancer and the Europe's Beating Cancer Plan. In particular, despite great advances in cancer treatment in recent decades, glioblastoma multiform (GBM) - the most common malignant brain tumor - stills remains without an effective cure and patients die in a few months. Around 220000 people die annually worldwide from GBM and its incidence is expected to increase in Europe due to its aging population. The standard treatment relies on the systemic administration of chemotherapeutics, which has limited efficacy and causes side effects. To overcome current limitations, TherACCage will develop artificial cells based on drug-loaded molecular cages as advanced nanosystems to tackle GBM. Such artificial cells will be equipped with processing machinery resulting in advanced biocompatible nanosystems with the ability to recognize biomarkers of the GBM microenvironment and induce responsive drug delivery in situ. The project combines unique expertise of the main host lab (molecular cages: cage-like molecular architectures with an internal cavity), the candidate (nanotechnology and artificial cells) and a secondary lab (evaluation of novel anticancer therapies) to ensure fulfillment of objectives. In a first stage, the fellow will be trained in advanced organic chemistry for the synthesis of degradable drug-loaded molecular cages. In a second stage, the assembly of artificial cells with molecular cages and their in vitro evaluation will be carried out. Finally, the fellow will carry out a secondment in a biological lab for the pre-clinical evaluation of the developed nanosystems. Importantly, the project will also allow the fellow to gain experience in patenting and tech transfer. Altogether, TheACCage will develop a new therapeutic technology and provide the fellow with complementary scientific and transferable skills with a significant impact toward an independent research career.
Fields of science
- HORIZON.1.2 - Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA) Main Programme
Funding SchemeHORIZON-AG-UN - HORIZON Unit Grant
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