Monthly Archives: July 2013

Nanoparticles, made to order — inside and out

A new coating technology developed at MIT, combined with a novel nanoparticle-manufacturing technology developed at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, may offer scientists a way to quickly mass-produce tailored nanoparticles that are specially coated for specific applications, including medicines and electronics.

Using this new combination of the two existing technologies, scientists can produce very small, uniform particles with customized layers of material that can carry drugs or other molecules to interact with their environment, or even target specific types of cells.

Creating highly reproducible batches of precisely engineered, coated nanoparticles is important for the safe manufacture of drugs and obtaining regulatory approval, says Paula Hammond, the David H. Koch Professor in Chemical Engineering at MIT and a member of MIT’s Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research.

“Everyone’s excited about nanomedicine’s potential, and there are some systems that are making it out to market, but people are also concerned about how reproducible each batch is. That’s especially critical for applications such as cancer therapies,” Hammond says. “Fortunately, we have combined two technologies that are at the forefront of addressing these issues and that show great promise for the future of nanomanufacturing.”

Hammond and Joseph DeSimone, the Chancellor’s Eminent Professor of Chemistry at UNC and the William R. Kenan Jr. Distinguished Professor of Chemical Engineering at North Carolina State University, are the senior authors of a paper describing the technology in the July 1 online edition of Advanced Materials. Lead author of the paper is Stephen Morton, a graduate student in Hammond’s lab.    Rest of the article