Monrovia, MA (PressExposure) March 03, 2014 -- Paloma Giangrande, University of Iowa, will speak about "Next-Generation SMART DRUGS: Aptamer-Based Cell-Targeted Therapies" at the Non-Coding RNAs and RNAi Research & Therapeutics Conference, taking place June 19-20, 2014 in San Diego, CA.
One of the advantages of cell-targeted drugs (i.e. SMART DRUGS) is their ability to deliver a therapeutic to a patient that increases the concentration of the medication in diseased areas of the body relative to others. These drugs also have increased efficacy and safety, meaning that the maximal effective dose and drug-side effects are both reduced. Despite impressive successes in the development of targeted approaches for treating some cancers (i.e. Her2+ breast cancers, CML, and GIST), many diseases (including most cancers and cardiovascular disease) are currently untreatable with current technology.
However, targeted approaches such as small molecules, antibodies, and RNA aptamers (synthetic RNA ligands) are quickly emerging as a promising category of next- generation SMART DRUGS. Professor Giangrande will describe the development, optimization and thorough in vitro and in vivo characterization of cell-specific RNA aptamers for the treatment of prostate cancer and vascular disease. These preclinical studies highlight the feasibility of this cell-targeted approach and establish a framework for developing RNA-based SMART DRUGS for the treatment of various diseases. Furthermore, these studies establish an essential foundation for the translation of RNA-based therapeutics to the clinic.
Professor Giangrande is an Associate Professor of Internal Medicine, and her lab's long-term research goals are to develop RNA-based tools to modulate cellular pathways underlying pathological cell proliferation in the setting of cancer and cardiovascular disease. Her current efforts are focused on selecting RNA aptamers to receptors expressed on the surface of target cells with SELEX (Systematic Evolution of Ligands by Exponential Enrichment) and her emerging interests include the development of diagnostic tools for imaging cancers and cardiovascular disease in vivo.
For more information about the conference, please visit http://www.gtcbio.com/rna.