Currently cancer is one of the biggest public health concerns due to the poor survival rate and the limited efficiency of modern cancer therapies. Conventional treatments, including chemotherapy, use high doses of toxic drugs, which often induce severe adverse effects on healthy organs. Therefore, an ideal anticancer therapy would provide the targeted administration of high drug concentration directly to the tumor for the maximum treatment while limiting degradation of the drug in the systemic circulation resulting in less adverse side effects. In addition, the efficacy of cancer treatment is also limited by the rapid development of tumor resistance. The mechanisms of this resistance are common to most cancers and include “pump” and “nonpump” resistance. Consequently, only simultaneous suppression of both types of cell resistance is capable of substantially increasing the efficacy of anticancer drugs. Finally, in order to optimize the drug delivery and enhance the efficiency of the treatment, it is highly desirable to employ clinically relevant imaging approaches for in situ monitoring of the disease progression and therapeutic responses. Therefore, my research is currently focusing on the development of multifunctional drug delivery systems for combinatorial delivery of siRNA as cancer resistance suppressors, anticancer drugs and real time imaging agents. One promising approach for overcoming the drug delivery obstacle is employing nanomaterials for carrying therapeutic agents specifically to the cancer cells. Nanoparticle interiors could be used as reservoirs for anticancer drugs and imaging agents while their large surface areas could be modified with genes and cell targeting moieties.
Schumann C, Nguyen D, Nogard M, Bortnyak Y, Korzan T, Chan S, Lorenz A, Moses A, AlbarauiH, Wong L Michaelis K, Zhu X, Alani A, Taratula O, Kransnow S, Marks D, Taratula R. Increasing lean muscle mass in mice viananoparticle-mediated hepatic delivery offollistatin mRNA. Transl Oncol. 2018 Oct;11(5):1137-1146.
Schumann C, Chan S, Millar JA, Bortnyak Y, Carey K, Fedchyk A, Wong L, Korzun T, Moses AS, Lorenz A, Shea D, Taratula O, Khalimonchuk O, Taratula O. Intraperitoneal nanotherapy for metastatic ovarian cancer based on siRNA-mediated suppression of DJ-1 protein combined with a low dose of cisplatin. Nanomedicine. 2018, 14(4):1395-1405
Li X, Schumann C, Albarqi HA, Lee CJ, Alani AWG, Bracha S, Milovancev M, Taratula O, Taratula O. A Tumor-Activatable Theranostic Nanomedicine Platform for NIR Fluorescence-Guided Surgery and Combinatorial Phototherapy. Theranostics. 2018, 8(3):767-784
Taratula, O. R.; Doddapaneni, B. S.; Schumann, C.; Li, X.; Bracha, S.; Milovancev, M.; Alani, A. W. G.; Taratula O. Naphthalocyanine-Based Biodegradable Polymeric Nanoparticles for Image-Guided Combinatorial Phototherapy. Chem. Mater. 2015, 27, 6155-6165
Taratula OR, Schumann C, Duong T, Taylor KL, and Taratula O. Dendrimer-encapsulated naphthalocyanine as a single agent-based theranostic nanoplatform for near-infrared fluorescence imaging and combinatorial anticancer phototherapy. Nanomedicine: Nanotechnology, Biology, and Medicine 2015, 11(8), 1961-1970
Taratula, O. R.; Dani, R. K.; Schumann, C.; Xub, H.; Wang, A.; Song, H.; Dhagat, P.; Taratula, O. Multifunctional nanomedicine platform for concurrent delivery of chemotherapeutic drugs and mild hyperthermia to ovarian cancer cells. Int. J. Phrmaceut. 2013, 458, 169-180.
Taratula, O.; Schumann, C.; Naleway, M.A.; Pang, A.J.; Chon, K.J.; Taratula,O. A Multifunctional Theranostic Platform Based On Phthalocyanine-Loaded Dendrimer For Image-Guided Drug Delivery And Photodynamic Therapy. Mol. Pharmaceut. 2013, 10 3946-3958.