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A new drug delivery platform called Nano-Ghosts loaded with a protective gene for the failing heart

Professor Julie McMullen, Institution: Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute

2019 Vanguard Grant

Years funded: 2020-2022


New treatments to protect the heart after a heart attack are urgently needed. In this proposal we will load a novel drug delivery system called “Nano-Ghosts” with drugs targeting a protective pathway in the heart (referred to as the PI3K pathway below). This project has the potential to lead to a new cardiac therapy for the human failing heart.  

Aim 1: To manufacture and assess Nano-Ghosts with payloads (drugs) targeting the PI3K pathway in vitro and in healthy adult mice.

Aim 2: To assess the most promising PI3K-targeted Nano-Ghost formulations in a setting of ischemia-reperfusion (heart disease model).

Outcomes: The development of Nano-Ghosts targeting the diseased heart with drugs acting on the PI3K pathway. Innovation: A first-of-a-kind cardiac therapy based on Nano-Ghosts combined with the potent therapeutic activity of PI3K-based drugs. Impact: A new therapy to minimise infarct size and subsequently prevent or greatly reduce infarct-induced heart failure.

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