Conventional cancer treatments include chemotherapy, surgery, and radiotherapy. Chemotherapy is the most widely used treatment and is advantageous for preventing the spread of cancer. However, it has several key limitations. Systemic intravenous (IV) chemotherapy requires large amounts of drug injected into the patient’s venous system. The amount of drug used exceeds what is needed to treat the disease, leading to severe adverse side effects, including hair loss and nausea. Each drug infusion requires numerous hours spent in the hospital, accumulating the costs associated with the treatment and significantly disrupting patients’ daily lives.
Our novel solution is to design a drug-eluting stent (DES) to delivery chemotherapy in a more targeted manner than current IV treatments and without incompatibility or immune issues. Drug-eluting stents are currently used in coronary applications and a similar DES was recently developed in this lab to treat cerebral vasospasms. This technology has the potential to use less drug to achieve the same clinical outcome and also reduce patient hospitalization time. The overall benefit would be to improve patient quality of life while reducing the financial burden the treatment poses.
Biomedical Engineering Undergraduate Student
This project is headed by biomedical engineering undergraduate student Cyrus Fiori.