The use of ultrasound waves in therapeutic drug delivery
Ultrasound is sound waves with a frequency greater than the upper audible limit of human hearing (i.e. >20kHz). Thanks to its ability to efficiently propagate through biological tissues, it has been widely employed in medical imaging for diagnostic purposes. Moreover, the physical and chemical effects of ultrasound waves have formed the basis for a range of therapeutic treatments, including bone tissue regeneration, breakage of blood clots and kidney stones, and tumour tissue ablation. More recently, a range of ultrasound-responsive drug delivery agents have been developed, which enable efficient delivery of therapeutic compounds at desired time-points and locations within the body. Such an approach has the potential to significantly improve therapeutic outcomes and limit adverse side-effects that are associated with conventional systemic therapies. One class of agents is represented by drug-loaded gas microbubbles, consisting of a spherical gaseous core (with a diameter in the order of 1-10 micrometres) surrounded by a shell. On exposure to an ultrasound wave, microbubbles respond by undergoing repeated expansion and contraction (a process known as ‘cavitation’), which releases the therapeutic payload and delivers it through the target tissue. This ultimately results in increased drug penetration and localisation, compared to more conventional administration methods. This talk will cover the fundamentals of ultrasound waves and their propagation in biological tissues. It will then introduce different types of ultrasound-responsive agents, including both micro- and nano-scale particles, and how they can be engineered to achieve a range of therapeutic effects.
Continuing Professional Development
This event can contribute towards your Continuing Professional Development (CPD) hours as part of the IET's CPD monitoring scheme.
16 Sep 2021
7:00pm - 8:00pm
Berkshire Local Network
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Lecturer in Pharmaceutical Nanotechnology and Nanofabrication - UCL
Dario holds BSc and MSc degrees in Biomedical Engineering from Politecnico di Milano (Italy), where he specialised in Biological Fluid Dynamics & Bio-Machines. In 2012, he obtained a PhD in Bioengineering Sciences at the University of Southampton, where he worked on the development of microfluidic-based models to investigate the physico-chemical behaviour of intravascular therapeutic agents. He subsequently worked as a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Southampton and at the University of Oxford (BUBBL group, Institute of Biomedical Engineering). In this period, he developed acoustofluidic devices to investigate the bio-physical behaviour and therapeutic efficacy of ultrasound-responsive drug delivery vehicles. In Oxford, he held a Research Fellowship in Engineering at Jesus College. In 2016, he was awarded a New Frontiers Fellowship by the University of Southampton (Department of Mechanical Engineering), and he was subsequently appointed to a lecturership in 2018. In 2020, he joined the UCL School of Pharmacy (Department of Pharmaceutics) as a Lecturer in Pharmaceutical Nanotechnology and Nanofabrication.
Reasons to attend
Improve your knowledge of drug delivery systems, nanotechnology, ultrasound and medical engineering.
Online Webinar Berkshire LN
Berkshire Local Network
Online Webinar organised by the Berkshire Local Network
- Webinar starts at 19:00
- Followed by Q&A
- Webinar concludes 20:00
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