WIN Thematic Seminar - Juewen Liu and Kaya Wong

Wednesday, February 14, 2024 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm EST (GMT -05:00)
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The Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology (WIN) has four main thematic research areas; Smart and Function Materials, Connected Devices, Next Generation Energy Systems and Therapeutics and Theranostics. To showcase the work going on within these areas, we will be holding monthly WIN Thematic Seminars featuring our members and their research group members.

For this event in the series, Professor Juewen Liu and postdoc Kaya Wong from the Therapeutics and Theranostics theme will be giving a seminar on "Selection of DNA Aptamers for Sensing and Drug Delivery Applications".

Selection of DNA Aptamers for Sensing and Drug Delivery Applications DNA aptamers are single-stranded oligonucleotides that can selectively bind to target molecules. This talk has two parts. In the first part, general aptamer selection methods and some new aptamers for small molecules including theophylline, uric acid, estradiol and lactate will be presented. These molecules have important therapeutic and biological functions and the aptamers can be made to biosensors for their detection. In the second part, aptamers for ocular drug delivery are discussed. Cornea is the major barrier to drug delivery to eye, which results in low bioavailability and poor efficacy of topical eye treatment. We selected cornea-targeting aptamers using tissue-SELEX on pig cornea. The efficacy of cyclosporine A (CsA)-loaded aptamer liposomes in human corneal epithelial cells (HCECs) with dry eye conditions was compared to the non-aptamer liposomes. Such aptamers can serve as a general ligand for ocular drug delivery.