Discovery Park Undergraduate Research Internship Program

"Disease-on-chip for theranostics"

About the Project

Project Time & Type:
Spring 2015 - DURI
Research area(s):
BIology, Chemistry, Nanotechnology
Project Description:
The disease-on-chip (DOC) system was designed to mimic the early stages of the development of breast cancer within the terminal duct of the mammary gland. In this system, tumor nodules grow in contact with the non-neoplastic epithelium that lines the duct and within a semi-circular geometry (ductal constraint). The purpose of the proposal is to assess the possibility to better target and treat localized tumor nodules using an intraductal approach. The efficacy of anticancer drugs depending on the tumor environment will be tested by comparing different settings used for drug screening. An important aspect will be to validate the physiological relevance of the DOC by comparing the architecture of the tumor nodules generated in that system to real tumors of the same type. In a second part of the project, paramagnetic nanoparticles will be designed to target specific cancer cells within the duct. In the future these nanoparticles will be used to deliver anticancer agents directly to their target cells using simultaneous detection and release of the drug cargo (theranostics).
Expected Student Contributions:
The intern will contribute to the project by analyzing the results from experiments related to drug treatments (e.g., scoring of cell death and proliferation), analysis of intracellular architecture (e.g., nuclear circularity), and targeting and toxicity of nanoparticles. Most of the experiments will be microscropy-based.
Related Website(s):
Desired Qualifications:
Same as those requested by the DURI program
Estimated Weekly Hours:
Department awards independent research credits for this project?
Yes, 3 credit hours

Professor in Charge

Lelievre, Sophie
basic medical sciences

Student Supervisor

Sophie Lelievre

Cooperating Faculty

Alexander Wei