John Garner

PLGA from PolySciTech used in development of nanoparticle-bacteria hybrid autonomous drug delivery system for cancer therapy

Blog Post created by John Garner on Dec 10, 2018

Suh, 2018 nanbeads polyscitech.PNG

Typhimurium VNP20009 is a recently developed non-pathogenic bacterium which has displayed targeting towards cancer cells. Nanoparticles attached to this bacterium follow it along as it readily penetrates into hypoxic tumor regions. Recently, researchers at Virginia Tech University utilized PLGA (AP082) from PolySciTech ( to create bacteria-nanoparticle hybrid carrier system to target tumors. This research holds promise to treat tumors in poorly vascular areas that conventional therapies cannot easily reach. Read more: Suh, SeungBeum, Ami Jo, Mahama A. Traore, Ying Zhan, Sheryl L. Coutermarsh‐Ott, Veronica M. Ringel‐Scaia, Irving C. Allen, Richey M. Davis, and Bahareh Behkam. "Nanoscale Bacteria‐Enabled Autonomous Drug Delivery System (NanoBEADS) Enhances Intratumoral Transport of Nanomedicine." Advanced Science (2018): 1801309.


“Abstract: Cancer drug delivery remains a formidable challenge due to systemic toxicity and inadequate extravascular transport of nanotherapeutics to cells distal from blood vessels. It is hypothesized that, in absence of an external driving force, the Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium could be exploited for autonomous targeted delivery of nanotherapeutics to currently unreachable sites. To test the hypothesis, a nanoscale bacteria‐enabled autonomous drug delivery system (NanoBEADS) is developed in which the functional capabilities of the tumor‐targeting S. Typhimurium VNP20009 are interfaced with poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) nanoparticles. The impact of nanoparticle conjugation is evaluated on NanoBEADS' invasion of cancer cells and intratumoral transport in 3D tumor spheroids in vitro, and biodistribution in a mammary tumor model in vivo. It is found that intercellular (between cells) self‐replication and translocation are the dominant mechanisms of bacteria intratumoral penetration and that nanoparticle conjugation does not impede bacteria's intratumoral transport performance. Through the development of new transport metrics, it is demonstrated that NanoBEADS enhance nanoparticle retention and distribution in solid tumors by up to a remarkable 100‐fold without requiring any externally applied driving force or control input. Such autonomous biohybrid systems could unlock a powerful new paradigm in cancer treatment by improving the therapeutic index of chemotherapeutic drugs and minimizing systemic side effects.”