Our group aims to develop polymeric vectors that provide sustained protection and prevention against tumors. Our primary objective is in the simplest terms to kick-start the immune system to respond against tumors in the body. We have a number of approaches which we believe can achieve this:
1) Delivering cancer specific antigens or plasmids/adenoviruses encoding cancer specific antigens that can prime and cross-prime antigen presenting cells (APCs) such as dendritic cells and macrophages. These APCs then go on to stimulate T-cells to act against the cancer from which the antigen was derived (see figure below).
2) Using microparticles prepared from established degradable polymers (i.e PLGA) and other developing novel degradable polymers to protect the biomolecules from degradation in vivo and to deliver adjuvants that prompt class I processing of antigens.
3) We are also using heat shock proteins and CpG oligonucleotides to prompt class I processing of cancer-specific antigens and thus generate stronger overall immune responses.
Dendritic Cell and T-cell interacting