Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Biochemistry major designing drug delivery devices

Over the next few weeks we will profile some of the students participating in our summer undergraduate research program.  Each will be explaining their research in their own words.  First is Zach Il'Giovine, a rising senior Biochemistry major and varsity soccer player.

"One limiting factor in medicine today is the inability of certain drugs to be successfully delivered to different parts of the body. As biodegradable polymers are developed as a means of drug transport, certain challenges have been met that require novel solutions. Many pharmaceuticals are not soluble in water, making it difficult to implement them in the body. The development of a drug-delivery molecule with both water loving and water hating portions will make the system readily compatible with the water-based human body. It has been my undertaking to couple a water-hating (hydrophobic) polylactide chain with a water-loving (hydrophilic) block of polyethylene glycol. Over the course of the summer, I have been making and analyzing these molecules, as well as exploring different reactions to identify the most efficient pathway." 
- Zach Il'Giovine

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