Targeted Architectures for Selective Delivery of Therapeutic Payloads

This research line focuses on the development of synthetic sequences for targeted delivery of therapeutic or diagnostic payloads in cells. We mainly focus on the rational engineering and optimization of known peptide/oligonucleotide aptamers by means of combined computational/experimental approaches, and on the development of new architectures able to perform targeted co-delivery of therapeutic agents. Compared to traditional small drugs, this strategy provides increased therapeutic activity with negligible off- target effect, thus allowing use of lower drug doses. Additionally, targeted co-delivery allows performing two therapeutic actions at the same time, e.g. cytotoxic activity of the drug and inhibition of natively constituted anti-apoptotic mechanisms of target cells.

These sequences are currently studied as homing agents for large nanostructures such as advanced seed-based, polymeric, and self-assembled nanoparticles.

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