Weill Cornell CTSC Seed-Funding Initiative Helped Lay the Path for New $10 Million Cancer Nanotechnology Center

A recent post to the Cornell Chronicle announced an exciting new collaboration between Cornell University and the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center to create a $10 million Center of Cancer Nanotechnology Excellence. This multidisciplinary Nanotechnology Center will focus on the creation of newer generation silica nanoparticles, or Cornell dots (C dots), for cancer molecular imaging and their translation to the clinic. These particle imaging probes support the future of personalized medicine through their innovative approach to visualizing and potentially delivering treatment to tumors in surgical and other cancer care settings.

As previously described on this blog, C dots are tiny tumor-targeted silica nanoparticles that can be labeled with radioactive iodine, injected, and taken up by cancerous cells in order to help physicians visualize the location of metastatic disease in the body. Early human studies suggest favorable safety, distribution, and clearance profiles for these particles, opening the door for further research to explore their use for a variety of diagnostic and therapeutic applications.

The significant progress with C dots has been the result of a long-standing collaboration between CTSC-supported physician-scientist Michelle Bradbury, MD, PhD, and Ulrich Wiesner, PhD, a professor at Cornell University-Ithaca. Dr. Bradbury, who holds a joint appointment at Sloan Kettering Institute and Weill Cornell Medicine, learned about Prof. Wiesner’s work with C dot nanotechnology as she was searching for a new targeting agent for her own work in tumor imaging.

Thanks to two pilot grants from the Weill Cornell CTSC’s seed-funding initiative, Dr. Bradbury and Prof. Wiesner were able to gather the initial pre-clinical data that have led to publications, additional funding, and the establishment of this new Nanotechnology Center to expand their work.

Everyone at the CTSC congratulates Dr. Bradbury, Prof. Wiesner, and their colleagues on this exceptional achievement. Through their hard work and commitment to the seed of their innovative idea, they have achieved a fantastic return on that initial pilot funding.

To keep abreast of upcoming funding opportunities through the CTSC, including future rounds of seed-funding support, visit here.

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