Breathe it in: Engineering Approaches Towards Diversifying Inhalable Therapeutics

Nov 9, 2022, 4:00 pm5:00 pm



Event Description

While respiratory diseases globally number among the top causes of mortality, the field of pulmonary drug delivery has lagged behind other routes of administration in the application of novel therapeutic approaches. Most current inhalers are employed to treat asthma and have yet to effectively address many significant respiratory conditions, including COVID-19. A significant need remains to expand inhaled drug delivery beyond the limited number of current therapeutics. Towards this need, research in the Fromen lab focuses the development of personalized immunomodulatory therapeutics for patients with a wide range of lung diseases. To overcome current challenges in the field, our group designs new approaches to therapeutic pulmonary aerosols, leveraging chemical engineering principles, immune engineering approaches, and additive manufacturing. Recent work in the lab has led to the design in vitro models of the lung, including biomaterials-inspired cell culture models and a full volume, 3D-printed dynamic airway deposition model that collectively enable us to test personalized aerosol delivery to targeted locations in the lung under breathing profiles. Parallel efforts from the lab have also resulted in the creation and characterization of nanoparticle therapeutics that can more efficiently direct innate immune responses within the lung, leading to more effective inhalable vaccines. Overall, this work provides advances towards personalized inhaled particulate formulations, with potential future applications for novel treatments of COVID-19, cancer, inflammation, vaccination, and allergy.