McCORMICK NEWS

Erik Luijten Highlighted in NAE Podcast

Erik Luijten, associate professor of engineering sciences and applied mathematics and materials science and engineering, was interviewed as part of the National Academy of Engineering’s weekly podcast.

Luijten and his collaborators at Johns Hopkins University have discovered how to control the shape of nanoparticles that move DNA through the body and have shown that the shapes of these carriers may make a big difference in how well they work in treating cancer and other diseases.     

This study, published in the Oct. 12 online edition of the journal Advanced Materials, is also noteworthy because this gene therapy technique does not use a virus to carry DNA into cells. Some gene therapy efforts that rely on viruses have posed health risks.

“This is the first time that DNA containing particles of different shapes have been made and have actually been used to deposit DNA into cells,” Luijten said on the podcast.