Project 2: An in vivo chick embryo model to study nanoparticle functionality for tumour detection and therapy

Dr. Annemarie Nadort, A/Prof. Andrei V. Zvyagin

Nanoparticles can be engineered to be photoluminescent or contain drugs, and nanotechnology has gained significant momentum for example in the area of cancer therapy research. An important step is to investigate the applicability and functioning of these NP's to living systems. A versatile model, doable for a physiscist or biomedical engineer, is the chick embryo chorioallantoic membrane (CAM). This membrane is responsible for exchange of gasses and nutrients of the growing chick embryo (compare to the placenta for humans) and allows grafting of human tumours and facilitates their growth and proliferation. At OBIS we have developed an ex ovo CAM model, where the embryo is grown outside of the egg to enable easy interventions and imaging (see Figure). We have successfully grown human tumours on the CAM, which are well-perfused by the CAM vessels [ref amsterdam]. This provides an excellent platform to study nanoparticle-tumour interactions. The following research lines are envisaged:

  • the delivery of NPs to tumour sites via the enhanced permeability and retention effect
  • the visualization of the tumours by photoluminescent NPs
  • the biodistribution and toxicity effects of NPs in vivo
  • the therapy-effects of drug-loaded NPs

The project is multidisciplinary and involves: handling of biological specimens and nanoparticles, cell work, biomedical imaging, engineering specialized optical microscopy equipment, biofunctionalization of NPs, etc., subject to candidates interests and abilities.

The candidate can have a degree in: Biomedical Engineering, Biotechnology, Physics, Biomedical Science, Biochemistry Contact: annemarie.nadort@mq.edu.au and andrei.zvyagin@mq.edu.au for more information.



Back to the top of this page