Star Polymer Unimolecualr Micelles for Drug Delivery

Period of Performance: 08/01/2000 - 01/31/2001


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

EIC Laboratories, Inc.
Principal Investigator


A star structural polymer will be synthesized for use as a drug delivery vehicle. The star polymer will be composed of dendrimer core and block copolymer arms. The inner block in the arm is lipophilic polymer and the outer block in the arm is hydrophilic polymer. The star polymer will form unimolecular micelles at aqueous condition. Hydrophobic drugs can be encapsulated in the unimolecular micelles and delivered to the cancer tissue via a passive targeting process. The long-term objective is to develop a general drug delivery vehicle which can be used for anticancer chemotherapy. This new drug delivery vehicle takes the advantage in the developed work on block copolymer micelles as a drug delivery vehicle but stabilized the micelles by covalently bonding the center core in the micelles. The specific aims in the Phase I program are to synthesize and characterize the target star polymer, investigate the micelles properties and encapsulate a model drug in the star polymer micelles to demonstrate feasibility. The Phase II program objective will be to develop structural optimized star polymer for drug delivery and carry out animal testing by the new system for cancer treatment. PROPOSED COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS: Most cancer treatment drugs have strong undesired side effects. With this proposed new drug delivery system, more selective targeted delivery by "passive targeting" is possible. This will reduce the undesired side effects and make chemotherapy for cancer treatment more efficient. New drug delivery systems have had an impact on nearly every branch of medicine. Annual sales in the United States of advanced drug delivery systems exceed $10 billion and are rising rapidly.