AMN SEMINAR SERIES: Nanorobots as novel theranostic tools: smart drug delivery and imaging
Nanorobots as novel theranostic tools: smart drug delivery and imaging
The combination of biological components and artificial ones emerges into what we called hybrid machines/bots. Alike bacteria or small swimmers found in nature, artificial nanobots convert bio-available fuels to generate propulsion force to swim at the nanoscale. One of the dreams in nanotechnology is to engineer small vehicles which can eventually be applied in vivo for medical purposes. Major advances have been demonstrated towards that end, however, questions like -how to swim at the nanoscale, how to achieve motion control and how to image these nanobots- need to be properly addressed.
Here, I will present our recent developments in the field of nanomotors that can autonomously swim and perform complex tasks in vitro. Our hybrid “bots” combine the best from the two worlds: biology (enzymes) and (nano)technology (nano- micro-particles) providing swimming capabilities, remote control, multifunctionality and actuation. I will present some of the proof-of-concept applications such as the efficient transport and the enhanced release of drugs into cancer cells and spheroids, sensing capabilities and the use of molecular imaging techniques for their tracking and localization. We will present our first preliminary results of enzyme nanomotors in vivo imaged by PET-CT.
Samuel is a Research Professor at the Institute for Bioengineering of Catalonia (IBEC) and the Catalan Institute for Research and Advanced Studies (ICREA) in Barcelona, Spain. Before that, he worked at the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems in Stuttgart, IFW Dresden, Germany, MANA-NIMS in Japan. His work spans from fundamental aspects of catalytic and biocatalytic nano-micromotors, 3D Bioprinted BioBOTS, electrochemical biosensors to applications in biomedical and environmental fields. He received several awards and recognitions such as the MIT TR35 as Top Innovator Under 35 in the Spanish edition, Guinness World Records in 2010 and 2017, the Princess of Girona Scientific Research Award 2015 and the National Research Award for Young Talent 2016 by the Catalan Foundation of Research. He received the ERC-Starting Grant in 2013, and two ERC-Proof-of-concept in 2016 and 2017. He has published about 125 papers with h-index of 45 and he has filed 6 patents.