The laboratory maintains a wide range of techniques ranging from cell and molecular biology through to ex-vivo and in-vivo models to address issues in drug delivery as they relate to the effectiveness of experimental therapeutics. There are two principles guiding research in the laboratory:
Biological Barriers - The laboratory is particularly interested in biological barriers within the lung as they pertain to pulmonary drug delivery, and the blood brain barrier as it pertains to limit access of drugs to the central nervous system (CNS). However, collaborations exist addressing issues of transport across the intestinal barrier. Macromolecules and biologicals are of particular interest, including peptides, proteins, antibodies/antibody fragments and polymer-protein/ polymer drug conjugates. In the area of polymers collaborative research involves the design of novel dendrimers, biosensors, 'plastic antibodies', where the polymers can serve not only as carriers but also as active agents in their own right. Some ongoing projects are also addressing small molecule transport and pharmacology, and the design of novel active entities based upon a template of small peptides identified through phage screening technology.
Experimental Therapeutics - Experimental therapeutics is the foundation for all work in the laboratory. Projects ongoing are driven by pathological investigations of disease targets which lead to the design and delivery of new innovative pharmacological agents. One strategy uses phage-library molecular display systems for peptide and antibodies fragments to test disease targets and also serve (peptide libraries) as a molecular basis for new drug design. Areas of disease include cancer (caveolin as the disease target protein), and immunity and inflammation.
We aim to undertake high quality research appreciated in the scientific literature for its novelty and worth, and the training of graduate and post-doctoral researchers adept in the thorough and critical conduct of hypothesis-driven science.