AANS Neurosurgeon | Volume 26, Number 4, 2017

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Nanowired Drugs Could Treat Patients with Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s

U of A doctoral student used titanate nanowires treated with the drug cerebrolysin to target delivery to the brain and central nervous system.

Millions of Americans suffer from neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. Researchers have identified promising new treatments, such as cerebrolysin, but current clinical approaches are ineffective because critical concentrations of the drug dissipate within the body before reaching the blood-brain barrier and central nervous system.

To address this problem, researchers have focused on various delivery vehicles for sustained and targeted drug release. An effective, targeted approach would eliminate the need for inefficient, high dosages that cause adverse side effects.

In recent years, biomedical engineers have experimented with nanomaterials as an approach to targeted delivery. Under the direction of Ryan Tian, associate professor of chemistry at the University of Arkansas, doctoral student Asya Ozkizilcik has improved the nanowiring of drugs for an international team of researchers who are working on a new method for treating neurodegenerative diseases.

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