Modified Nanoparticles for Lipophilic Toxin Sequestration

Period of Performance: 09/01/2011 - 05/31/2012


Phase 1 STTR

Recipient Firm

AuraSense, LLC
8045 Lamon Avenue Suite 410
Skokie, IL 60077
Principal Investigator
Firm POC

Research Institution

Northwestern University
1801 Maple Ave.
Evanston, IL 60201
Institution POC


ABSTRACT: Mycotoxins are a class of weaponizable toxic secondary metabolites of molds and fungi. No treatments exist for exposure to these lipophilic poisons. AuraSense proposes to use lipid and protein modified gold nanoparticles to develop constructs for the sequestration of toxic lipophilic molecules. Nanoparticles are ideal materials for development of such a system, as they are able to be finely tuned in terms of their size, molecular composition, surface charge, and interfacial properties. In addition, we have demonstrated in preliminary work that they are nontoxic, and have a proven ability to avidly bind lipophilic molecules. Due to the difficulty of working with mycotoxins, cholesterol will be used as a model system to demonstrate sequestration from cell membranes. BENEFIT: AuraSense s nanoparticle constructs have great potential as effective agents for transporting lipophilic toxins, such as mycotoxins, safely out of the body. AuraSense nanoparticle technology has been developed in numerous proof-of-concept applications and has been the subject of consistent commercial interest to date. This platform stands to significantly advance defense alternatives in combating lipophilic toxins. While broadly applicable in a number of therapeutic areas, AuraSense s nanoparticle platforms are highly relevant to the Biodefense market.