Local Chapter Convention of the Controlled Release Society Germany
24 March, 2010, Saarbrücken, Germany
The annual local chapter convention of the Controlled Release Society (CRS) Germany was organized by the 2009 vice president, Jun.-Prof. Marc Schneider from Saarland University. In 2010, the event was for the first time embedded into the International Conference and Workshop on Biological Barriers, which is biannually held in Saarbrücken, Germany. As a result, the convention brought together internationally recognized scientists from industry and academia. Keynote speakers were Prof. Ijeoma Uchebu from the University of London, Prof. Tejal Desai from the University of California, San Francisco, Prof. Udo Bakowsky from the University of Marburg, Germany, and Prof. Hamid Gandehari whose home institution is the University of Utah in Salt Lake City. In between the keynote lectures, PhD students and postdocs from Germany, England, Ireland, Poland, and Russia exhibited their work in short podium presentations. An additional highlight of the conference was the Galenos Euro-PhD Award Ceremony where 4 newly graduated awardees received their diploma. This report covers recent advances in controlled release drug delivery presented at the convention as well as information on decisions made by the local chapter during the business meeting.
NEW POLYMERS FOR BIOAVAILABILITY AND SOLUBILITY ENHANCEMENT
In her keynote lecture, Ijeoma Uchebu provided an overview of nanomedicines for both drug and gene delivery with an emphasis on polymeric carriers such as poly-L-lysine, modified polyethylenimines, poly(propylenimine) dendrimers, poly(amino acids) and ammonium palmitoyl glycol chitosan. In one part of her talk which was dedicated to oral drug delivery, she presented promising results concerning solubilization of hydrophobic drugs into polyelectrolyte nanoparticles. Later, she reported on intravenous gene delivery with dendritic poly(propylenimine vectors leading to almost exclusive tumor targeting in an orthotopic tumor model, visualized by SPECT imaging.
NANOSTRUCTURED PARTICULATE DRUG CARRIERS FOR ADVANCED DRUG DELIVERY
Tejal Desai from the Therapeutic Micro and Nanotechnology Laboratory shared her profound experience in the field of bioadhesive drug delivery devices with us. She drew an intrinsic comparison between gecko setae allowing geckos to stick to walls and synthetic silicon nanowires produced by vapor deposition. In her lecture, she explained the mucoadhesive characteristics of these drug delivery systems showing specific interactions with the gastrointestinal mucosa leading to greater residence time which was investigated in vitro and in a canine model.
NOVEL ULTRASOUND ACTIVE LIPOSOMAL FORMULATIONS IN DIAGNOSTICS AND THERAPEUTICS
Udo Bakowsky's talk was given by his collaborator Andreas Becker who introduced the audience to high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) techniques. The background of ultrasound imaging was explained with respect to microbubbles as carriers of contrast agents. Andreas Becker showed principles of the measurements and optimization of different liposomal microbubble formulations concerning defined stability. The successful microbubble formulations are under investigation for sonothrombolysis.
The keynote lecture by Hamid Gandehari took up the theme of the very first lecture. The seminar covered PAMAM dendrimers for oral delivery of chemotherapeutics, recombinant polymers, namely polypeptides, stimuli-sensitive hybrid particles, bi- and monocyclic RGD-peptides for multivalency, and recombinant silk-elastin-like polymers that form hydrogels at body temperature, allowing an insight into the lecturer's extraordinary experience with polymer nanomedicines. Concerning biological characterization, dendritic polymers were shown to interact with tight junctions, which lead to opening of the latter and explained the high efficacy of these polymers.
Local Chapter MEETING
During the business meeting which took place over lunch, all members of the CRS Chapter Germany were invited to practice their so-determination in the society.
The acting executive board was reelected unanimously. The suggestion to organize the 2011 meeting in Jena with Prof. Dagmar Fischer as current vice president and president-to-be in 2011 was most welcome. It was discussed that a website for the local chapter would be introduced and that a register of members would be established for circulation of news and meetings, but also for reminders of membership fees.
GALENOS EURO-PHD AWARD CEREMONY
The Galenos Euro-PhD program supports students in the field of advanced drug delivery that spend at least 12 months of their practical training in a research institute abroad. It offers networking with other fellows and well recognized researchers and advances the PhD training of the fellows in mandatory optional workshops. Presentation techniques are additionally trained, and one oral presentation at an international conference is obligatory to receive the diploma after successful graduation. Three of the awardees that received their diploma in Saarbrücken gave their presentation within the framework of the CRS day. All of the awardees had previously successfully defended their thesis and were finally awarded their diploma.
During the poster session, students and postdocs from all over the world presented a vast amount of data on posters of 188 accepted abstracts. The posters had already been mounted in the morning and could be viewed all day. From their active participation, it was once again obvious that the CRS local chapter meeting is an excellent opportunity for young researchers to present their data in posters and short presentations. Local food was served for lunch and during the poster session and the participants were invited to stroll the posters with a glass of wine. The poster session also allowed for networking and exchange of experiences, inspired by the lectures and posters, having the conference come to a placid end.
submitted by Olivia M. Merkel
Department Pharmaceutcs and Biopharmacy