Assistant Professor; Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School
Principal Research Scientist; Institute for Medical Engineering and Science, MIT
Associate member; Broad Institute, Harvard and MIT
Precision Biomaterials for Combination Cancer Therapy
The generic use of an ‘inert’ vehicle that delivers a cargo to treat a range of cancer types and disease states obeys the ‘one material fits all’ rule. However, in the absence of mechanistic understanding of the underlying biology and immunology, this approach leads to suboptimal and unpredictable clinical outcomes. The key factors constructing the tumor milieu should guide the design of disease-responsive materials that can be administered locally to release embedded drugs over time. Given the growing availability of polymeric scaffolds and nano-materials for cancer therapy, a biologically-informed material that responds to each patient’s needs, and reacts in a graded manner based on disease cues, would pave the way for precision materials for cancer therapy. This talk will focus on recent efforts in the development of rationally designed personalized materials that thrive differentially based on specific disease traits—biological signatures— that in turn facilitate efficacious and selective cargo delivery to the target cancer cells, while sparing normal cells. Artzi’s material systems are designed such that one can study the impact of the sequence of combination therapies and the administration route on the immune response and the associated therapeutic outcomes.
Presenter: Dr. Natalie Artzi, Assistant Professor, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Department of Medicine, Division of Engineering in Medicine, Harvard Medical School; Principal Research Scientist, Institute of Medical Engineering & Science, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Dr. Natalie Artzi is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Medicine, Division of Engineering in Medicine, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School. She is also a Principal Research Scientist at MIT and an Associate Member of the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT. She completed her postdoctoral studies in the laboratory of Prof. Elazer Edelman at MIT focusing on studying tissue:biomaterial interactions and designing smart biomaterials for theranostic applications.
Dr. Artzi is the recipient of multiple grants and awards, including the One Brave Idea award, The Stepping Strong Innovator Award, Nano-Micro-Letters Researcher Award, and the Controlled Release Society Young Investigator Award.
Currently, Dr. Artzi directs multiple research venues aiming to integrate science, engineering, and medicine to rationally design personalized materials to improve human health, and has co-founded a startup company, BioDevek, which develops next-generation adhesive materials for the prevention of leakage and its associated complications following internal surgeries.