Macromolecular delivery systems can improve pharmacokinetic behavior of powerful drugs and broaden their application. Besides improving therapies agains pathologic phenomena in living cells and tissues directly, our primary research interests also focus on modulating the body’s own immune system in order to recognize and eliminate pathogens or malignancies and provide long-lasting immunity against them.
Nano-sized macromolecular delivery systems can provide key features to address components of the immune system and delivery immune modulating compounds. For that purpose, we design well-defined block copolymers with self-assembling and responsive properties. The resulting nano-sized carriers can sense various stimuli including temperature, pH or light and provide reactivity to amino acid residues as well as specific receptor binding properties. Key feature of them is their biodegradability towards nanoparticle disassembly under physiologically relevant conditions over time.
Together with our partners from the Collaborative Research Center SFB 1066 we utilize these carriers for developing selective immune-responses in vitro and in vivo. In addition, strategies to stimulate immune activity and especially to modulate regulatory properties of the tumor microenvironment are investigated in order to combat cancer via next generation nano-immunotherapeutics.
T. Weil, M. Barz “From Polymers to Functional Biomaterials” Macromolecular Bioscience 2017, 17, 1700307.
N. Leber, L. Nuhn, R. Zentel “Cationic Nanohydrogel Particles for Therapeutic Oligonucleotide Delivery”, Macromolecular Bioscience 2017, 17, 1700092.
L. Nuhn, N. Vanparijs, A. De Beuckelaer, L. Lybaert, G. Verstraete, K. Deswarte, S. Lienenklaus, N. M. Shukla, A. C. D. Salyer, B. N. Lambrecht, J. Grooten, S. A. David, S. De Koker, B. G. De Geest “pH-Degradable Imidazoquinoline-Ligated Nanogels for Lymph Node Focused Immune Activation”, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 2016, 113, 8098-8103.
S. Hartmann, L. Nuhn, B. Palitzsch, M. Glaffig, N. Stergiou, B. Gerlitzki, E. Schmitt, R. Zentel, H. Kunz “CpG-Loaded Multifunctional Cationic Nanohydrogel Particles as Self-Adjuvanting Glycopeptide Antitumor Vaccines”, Advanced Healthcare Materials 2015, 4, 522-527.
E. Lepeltier, L. Nuhn, C.-M. Lehr, R. Zentel “Not just for tumor targeitng: unmet medical needs and opportunities for nanomedicine“, Nanomedicine (Lond.) 2015, 10, 3147-3166.
L. Nuhn, S. Hartmann, B. Palitzsch, B. Gerlitzki, E. Schmitt, R. Zentel, H. Kunz “Water-Soluble Polymers Coupled with Glycopeptide Antigens and T-Cell Epitopes as Potential Antitumor Vaccines”, Angewandte Chemie International Edition 2013, 52, 10652-10656; Angewandte Chemie 2013, 125, 10846-10850.