TR&D 2

Research Objective: Bioengineering of nanoimmunomaterials (NIMs) for immune cell programming

Technology Outcome: Libraries of novel nanoimmunomaterials and biodegradable particles for customizable intracellular delivery and extracellular presentation ex vivo and in vivo.

The goal of TR&D 2 is to innovate tools to bioengineer immune cells from the inside-out and from the outside-in with the creation and characterization of enabling nanomaterial-based immunoengineering technologies and products. By creating technology to redesign and engineer immunological systems, this TR&D synergizes with synthetic biology. The Specific Aims are:

  • Specific Aim 1: Engineer immune cell-specific polymeric nanoparticles for enhanced intracellular delivery of nucleic acids.
  • Specific Aim 2: Engineer biomimetic nanoimmunomaterials as artificial APCs (aAPC) for immunostimulation or immunosuppression.
  • Specific Aim 3: Engineer nanoimmunomaterials for combined intracellular and extracellular signaling to target T cells.

TR&D 2 will bioengineer NanoImmunoMaterials (NIMs) through the design and synthesis of new biomaterials and nanomaterials created for immunomodulation, including materials for superior stimulation of immune cells and of avoidance of cellular counter measures. In addition to a focus on engineering T cells (especially cytotoxic T cells and regulatory T cells), NIMs will also be developed for engineering dendritic cells (novel genetic vaccines) and engineering other cells in target microenvironments (through cellular reprogramming).

Biodegradable polymer / mRNA nanoparticles for intracellular delivery
Ellipsoidal PLGA nanoparticles useful as artificial antigen presenting cells (aAPCs)