BME Seminar Series: Dr. Forrest Kievit, University of Nebraska-Lincoln (Big Ten Seminar Series)
"Nanoparticles for delivery to and treatment of neurological disorders"
Effective treatment of neurological disorders such as brain cancer and traumatic brain injury (TBI) are partially hampered because of limited delivery of therapeutics into the brain. Nanoparticles offer a means of improving delivery into the brain because of their multifunctionality, high surface area, and relatively long circulation times. In this talk I will highlight several nanoparticles we have developed that can accumulate and be retained within brain cancer and TBI. Delivery into the brain was monitored through a combination of fluorescence and magnetic resonance imaging. Therapeutic efficacy in brain cancer was achieved through nanoparticle-mediated siRNA delivery to inhibit DNA repair specifically within brain cancer cells for sensitization to radiation therapy observed in vitro and a genetic mouse model. Therapeutic efficacy in TBI was achieved through nanoparticle-mediated reduction in the spread of reactive oxygen species beyond the primary injury and shown through histopathology and behavioral studies in mice. Our findings illustrate that nanoparticle treatment strategies for these neurological disorders could provide a more effective path for improving long-term patient outcome.
Forrest Kievit earned his Ph.D. in the Materials Science and Engineering Department at the University of Washington, followed by postdoctoral and research faculty positions in the Department of Neurological Surgery and Center for Integrative Brain Research at Seattle Children’s Research Institute prior to joining the Biological Systems Engineering Department at the University of Nebraska as an Assistant Professor in 2016. His group’s research focuses on engineering nanoparticle-based strategies for solving current problems in neuroscience with an overall career goal of eventually translating a nanomedicine into clinical use.