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Smart Imaging Probes

Nanodroplets for brain tumour imaging and therapy

Project ID: 2023_035

Student: Yuang You

1st Supervisor: Dr Maya Thanou, King’s College London
2nd Supervisor: Dr Kirsten Christensen-Jeffries, King’s College London
Additional Supervisors: Dr Laura Peralta and Dr Antonios Pouliopoulos, King’s College London
Clinical Supervisor: Prof Wady Gedroyc, Imperial College London, and Prof Keyoumars Ashkan, King’s College London


Aim of the PhD Project:

The main aim of the project is to develop super stable nanodroplets to image the blood brain to tumour barrier using the following imaging modalities 

  • Ultrasound super resolution
  • Magnetic resonance
  • Fluorescence imaging


Lay Summary:

Emerging phase-changing sonoresponsive materials have attracted substantial attention in biomedical applications for both tumour imaging and therapeutic purposes due to their unique response to ultrasound. As ultrasound is applied at different frequencies and powers, nanodroplets have been shown to cavitate by the process of acoustic droplet vapourisation (ADV), causing the development of mechanical forces which promote sonoporation through cellular membranes. This allows drugs to be delivered efficiently into deeper tissues where tumours are located. Recent reviews on nanodroplets are mostly focused on the mechanism of cavitation and their applications in biomedical fields. However, the chemistry of the nanodroplet components has not been explored. In this Project we will explore novel materials and preparation methods of nanodroplets. We will aim to improve nanodroplets’ efficiency as ultrasound and photoacoustic-multimodal imaging agents to image, effect and monitor drug delivery.


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