Breast cancer is a disease with a substantial impact on society and is the most common form of cancer among women, with significant mortality rates. The early diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer is key in providing positive patient outcomes. To this end, my research project is to develop polymer based devices which are able to both image tumors in vivo and deliver therapeutic payloads. This project encompasses the synthesis as well as in vitro and in vivo evaluation of multifunctional polymers incorporating:
- Peptide or oligonucleotide aptamers for cellular targeting;
- Fluorescent dyes, fluorine containing monomers for 19F MRI, and radioisotope chelating moieties for PET to enable multimodal imaging;
- Reversible linkage of oligonucleotides for targeted delivery of gene therapies.