Nanoparticle Treatment for PAD
Bioengineering Professor Kytai Nguyen is using a National Institutes of Health grant to design a nanoparticle delivery system that will take needed plasmids to arteries in patients who are suffering from peripheral artery disease (PAD) in their arms and legs. A plasmid is the genetic structure in a cell that can replicate independently of chromosomes and often is used in the laboratory for the manipulation of genes.
“This grant could help us find better, less invasive ways to cope with PAD,” Dr. Nguyen says. “When arteries become constricted, it’s more difficult for them to carry oxygen and blood to that body part, usually the leg for PAD. It can lead to muscle pain and numbness even when at rest, along with subsequent complications like critical limb ischemia, stroke, and heart attack.”
PAD affects more than 200 million people worldwide and is associated with high rates of amputation, morbidity, and mortality. Nguyen’s research aims to reduce these complications and improve patients’ quality of life.