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Houston, TX, United States

Serda R.E.,Methodist Hospital Research Institute
International Journal of Nanomedicine | Year: 2013

Elevated understanding and respect for the relevance of the immune system in cancer development and therapy has led to increased development of immunotherapeutic regimens that target existing cancer cells and provide long-term immune surveillance and protection from cancer recurrence. This review discusses using particles as immune adjuvants to create vaccines and to augment the anticancer effects of conventional chemotherapeutics. Several particle prototypes are presented, including liposomes, polymer nanoparticles, and porous silicon microparticles, the latter existing as either single- or multiparticle platforms. The benefits of using particles include immune-cell targeting, codelivery of antigens and immunomodulatory agents, and sustained release of the therapeutic payload. Nanotherapeutic-based activation of the immune system is dependent on both intrinsic particle characteristics and on the immunomodulatory cargo, which may include danger signals known as pathogen-associated molecular patterns and cytokines for effector-cell activation. © 2013 Serda, publisher and licensee Dove Medical Press Ltd. Source

Methodist Hospital Research Institute | Date: 2015-06-12

Disclosed are methods and compositions for the detection of one or more different types of cellular biomarkers in a biological sample, and in particular, methods and compositions for the rapid, one-step, highly-cell specific detection of circulating tumor cells from minute quantities of mammalian biological fluids, including, for example, from a single drop of human blood. In certain embodiments, distinctly-labeled, multi-aptamer detection reagents are provided for detecting and quantitating selected cancer cells in clinical samples such as patient specimens and/or tissues. Aptamer-based imaging methodologies are also provided for use in a variety of diagnostic assay protocols.

Methodist Hospital Research Institute | Date: 2015-08-04

Apparatus for determining the quantity of a target protein and other types of biomarkers or analytes present in a sample, the apparatus comprising:

Michor F.,Dana-Farber Cancer Institute | Liphardt J.,University of California at Berkeley | Ferrari M.,Methodist Hospital Research Institute | Widom J.,Northwestern University
Nature Reviews Cancer | Year: 2011

Large-scale cancer genomics, proteomics and RNA-sequencing efforts are currently mapping in fine detail the genetic and biochemical alterations that occur in cancer. However, it is becoming clear that it is difficult to integrate and interpret these data and to translate them into treatments. This difficulty is compounded by the recognition that cancer cells evolve, and that initiation, progression and metastasis are influenced by a wide variety of factors. To help tackle this challenge, the US National Cancer Institute Physical Sciences-Oncology Centers initiative is bringing together physicists, cancer biologists, chemists, mathematicians and engineers. How are we beginning to address cancer from the perspective of the physical sciences? © 2011 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved. Source

Carroll R.K.,Methodist Hospital Research Institute | Musser J.M.,Methodist Hospital Research Institute
Molecular Microbiology | Year: 2011

Streptococcal pyrogenic exotoxin B (SpeB) is a protease secreted by group A streptococci and known to degrade a wide range of host and GAS proteins in vitro. Although the role of SpeB in GAS infection is debated, recent evidence has conclusively demonstrated that SpeB is critical for the pathogenesis of severe invasive disease caused by GAS. Genetic inactivation of the speB gene results in significantly decreased virulence in a necrotizing fasciitis model of infection. Production of fully active SpeB by GAS is extremely complex. Following transcription and translation the SpeB protein is secreted as an inactive zymogen, which is autocatalytically processed through a series of intermediates to form an active protease. Each step from transcription to protease activation is tightly controlled and regulated by the bacterial cell reflecting the critical role played by this virulence factor in GAS infection. Here we review the molecular aspects of SpeB production by GAS from transcription to activation and the multiple layers of control involved. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd. Source

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