we are very pleased to announce that the project “Nanomedine for glioblastoma therapy” (NANO4GLIO), coordinated by our Action member Valentin Cena from Spain and having two other Action members - Prof. Aiva Plotniece from Latvia and Prof. René Roy from Canada (Université du Québec à Montréal - who has just submitted his request as MC Observer), has just been proposed for funding within 10th Joint Transnational Call (JTC) for "European Innovative Research & Technological Development Projects in Nanomedicine" within the framework of the ERA-NET EuroNanoMed III.
In response to this call, 91 eligible pre-proposals were submitted. After the first evaluation stage, 37 consortia were invited to submit a full proposal. Following a new remote evaluation, the Peer Review Panel (PRP) met in Rome on September 23-24 to discuss the proposals and gave its recommendations to the EuroNanoMed 2019 Call Steering Committee concerning approval or rejection based on the overall quality of the proposal, taking into account the individual referee comments, and the whole PRP discussion. In total 13 proposals were proposed for funding.
Below we report the summary of the NANO4GLIO proposal.
Congratulations Valentin, Aiva and René, we wish a great success with this project!
Summary of NANO4GLIO:
The main objective of this project is to establish a new therapeutic approach for cancer treatment general and for glioblastoma (GBM) in particular, a tumor for which there is no effective treatment. The novelty of the project relies not only on the use of RNAi technology (more specifically siRNA) to knock down selected proteins involved in tumoral cell survival and proliferation making them more susceptible to anticancer drugs and/or radiation but also on the use of novel cutting-edge multitasking nanoparticles (NPs). The specific siRNAs will be target-delivered by these NPs that will be fine-tuned in their structure and chemical surface to perform efficiently the tasks required for targeting an intracerebral glioblastoma xenograft: blood-brain barrier crossing, siRNA target-delivered or tumor imaging. There are several relevant issues that are addressed by the project: a) Improving BBB crossing by NPs; b) toxicity of the NPs in vivo and in vitro (on healthy and tumoral cells); c) fine-tuning of the 3D structure of the NPs based on feed-back from biological experiments and d) the use of selected fresh xenografted human tumors obtained from cells isolated from patients to increase the likeliness that the response of the mice to the nanoplexes could enhance our understanding of key aspects of glioblastoma biology and, in proper time, reach the clinical setting. The project will use a multidisciplinary approach strategy and the preliminary results already obtained decrease the technological risk of the project. The final result of the development of the project will be to provide the “proof-of-concept” in an animal model of xenografted human glioblastoma cells, obtained from patients by the clinicians participating in the consortium, that RNAi therapeutics is effective in cancer treatment either by itself or by potentiating the effect of anticancer drugs.