2019 MRS Fall Meeting & Exhibit

Symposium SB09-Interfacing Bio/Nano Materials with Cancer and the Immune System

Engineered materials enable transformative new modalities to interface with the human body, including the detection and monitoring of disease progression, therapeutic targeting of pathological conditions, to rally the immune system, and to elucidate fundamental biological processes. For instance, nanostructured materials with exceptional physiochemical properties permit precision measurement of tumor or immune cell heterogeneity with exquisite molecular and functional resolution. Microfluidic technologies for biofluid manipulation and partitioning drive automated, high-throughput processing of patient biofluids for “liquid biopsies” and point-of-care diagnostics. Moreover, biomimetic hydrogels and scaffolds with engineered molecular architectures permit 3D organoid culture from human patient samples. Organ-on-chip platforms can further recapitulate the aberrant tumor microenvironment by co-culture of stromal and vascular cells, hypoxia, molecular gradients and interstitial flow. In addition, nanoparticles loaded with therapeutic and imaging modalities may improve the efficacy of soluble drugs with reduced side effects. Finally, biomimetic materials also represent a powerful modality for interfacing with the immune system. Nano and micro payloads can be coupled to immune or stem cell carriers for active delivery. Biomaterial scaffolds can be used for immune cell programming for vaccination and expansion for biomanufacturing adoptive T-cell therapies. Overall, the topical focus of this symposium will broadly encompass the interface between materials, cancer, and immunoengineering research, including basic principles, new materials, systems integration, and translational and clinical utilities for biomedical research and treatment.

Topics will include:

  • Materials and technologies for disease biomarker detection including proteins, circulating microvesicles and circulating DNAs.
  • Materials and technologies for isolation and analysis of circulating tumor cells, tumor stem/initiating cells, or immune cells
  • Microfluidic systems and devices for processing of patient biofluids and single-cell analysis.
  • Biomolecular assays with transformative clinical impact in advanced clinical centers as well as for low-resource settings.
  • Biomaterials (e.g., hydrogels, nanofibers, decellularized matrix) for 3D tissue culture, angiogenesis, extravasation, and patient-derived organoids
  • Biofabrication and 3D printing to recapitulate heterotypic interactions in the tumor microenvironment
  • Bioreactors and microfluidic culture that mimic perfusion, lymphatics, interstitial pressure, and molecular gradients.
  • Multi-organ microphysiological systems to reveal organ-organ interactions in preclinical drug testing.
  • Novel nanomaterials for tumor targeting, imaging, and drug/nucleic acid/protein delivery.
  • Biomimetic, bio-inspired and cell-based delivery platforms for active and targeted delivery.
  • Micro and nanoparticles for immune cell priming and modulation.
  • Biomaterials for immune cell programming for cancer vaccines and biomanufacturing.

Invited Speakers:

  • Ming Guo (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA)
  • David Mooney (Harvard University, USA)
  • Vivek Shenoy (University of Pennsylvania, USA)
  • Darrell Irvine (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA)
  • Zhen Gu (University of California, Los Angeles, USA)
  • Andres Garcia (Georgia Institute of Technology, USA)
  • Jan Lammerding (Cornell University, USA)
  • Celeste Nelson (Princeton University, USA)
  • Valerie Weaver (University of California San Francisco, USA)
  • Emily Day (University of Delaware, USA)
  • Dennis Discher (University of Pennsylvania, USA)
  • Rong Fan (Yale University, USA)
  • Claudia Fischbach-Teschl (Cornell University, USA)
  • Jim Heath (Institute for Systems Biology, USA)
  • Catherine Klapperich (Boston University, USA)
  • Gabe Kwong (Georgia Institute of Technology, USA)
  • Shelly Peyton (University of Massachusetts, Amherst, USA)
  • Nastaran Zahir (National Cancer Institute, USA)

Symposium Organizers

Ian Wong
Brown University
School of Engineering

SJ Claire Hur
The Johns Hopkins University
Department of Mechanical Engineering

Shana Kelley
University of Toronto
Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy

John Slater
University of Delaware
Department of Biomedical Engineering

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