Funded Research

Innovative Drug Delivery Strategies to Treat Pediatric Kidney Disease
Principal Investigator(s):
  • Jonathan Barnes, Ph.D. Chemistry
  • Jeffrey Miner, Ph.D. Medicine
  • Center for Metabolism and Immunity
Award Mechanism:
Interdisciplinary Research Initiative
Project Period:
2/1/2019 - 1/31/2022
Total Amount:

Project Summary

Systemic administration of small-molecule therapeutics can lead to off-target toxicity and low doses at sites requiring treatment.  To mitigate these issues while improving pharmacokinetics and bioavailability, scientists have turned to nanomaterials that house drug cocktails and have longer blood circulation half-lives.  However, most nanomaterials lack active targeting agents that direct the drug delivery vehicle to the site of diseased tissue, and even fewer can specifically target the kidney since they are too large.  We propose to develop novel matrix protein-drug conjugates that bear new biocompatible polymers.  These will simultaneously target kidney glomeruli, function as imaging agents, and locally deliver combinations of therapeutics.  This research could lead to new approaches to treating pediatric kidney disease.

Specific aims

·         Synthesize and test new protein-polymer conjugates as renal targeting delivery in proof of concept        studies.

·         Test the safety and efficacy of therapeutic drugs delivered by novel protein-polymer vehicles in mouse models of pediatric kidney diseases.

Potential impact on child health

The innovative approach of this research will result in a promising new platform for personalized treatment of acute and chronic pediatric kidney diseases.