MIT and Harvard professors awarded Rusnanoprize for medical nanoparticles
24 Oct '13
The Award Committee of the Rusnanoprize-2013, an international competition sponsored by Rusnano, Russia’s nanotech giant, has announced winners in the biotech and nanotech nominations. According to portal Nanonewsnet.ru, the first prize goes to Robert Langer, a professor emeritus at MIT, and Omid Farokhzad, an associate professor at Harvard Medical School, for their project aimed at using special nanoparticles in medicine.
The two professors have developed combined nanoparticles with their surface covered with bioactive molecules that are able to specifically pinpoint certain targets in the human body, for example, the surface of cancerous cells. Such particles can circulate in blood vessels for a long time, and they exclusively ‘select’ tumor cells to accumulate on them.
The technology has laid the foundation for the development of drugs to treat brain cancer, a kind of neoplasm which traditional therapies typically fail to combat.
The award winner for commercializing the Langer-Farokhzad discovery is Bind Therapeutics Inc., a U.S.-based biotech company and one of Rusnano’s international assets. The company is developing its Accurins, a next gen highly-selective drug with targeted and programmable action.
The Rusnanoprize-2013’s awarding ceremony is slated for November 1 during the Moscow-hosted Open Innovations international forum.