20 April

Nano-Microbicides for Preventing Sexual HIV Transmission

Friday 20 April 2018, 12:00pm

ICN2 Seminar Hall, ICN2 Building, UAB

By José das Neves,  Nanomedicines & Translational Drug Delivery Group i3S – Instituto de Investigação e Inovação em Saúde & INEB – Instituto de Engenharia Biomédica, Universidade do Porto, Portugal

Short Abstract: Sexual transmission remains the main cause of dissemination of HIV infection. In addition to available preventive strategies, topical microbicides may provide a valuable new protection tool, namely for women at settings characterized by strong gender imbalance. The use of nanotechnology-based approaches for developing vaginal (and/or rectal) microbicide products has captured the attention of researchers as a way to improve the local pharmacokinetics of antiretroviral molecules and, consequently, their efficacy.

Our group has been particularly focused on the development of polymeric nanoparticles for the vaginal delivery of promising microbicide drug candidates. Our findings sustain that adequate engineering of nanoparticles may yield drug carriers that can adequately distribute throughout the vagina, cross the mucus barrier, penetrate/accumulate at the epithelium and allow enhancing interactions with different cell types, thus resulting in improved local pharmacokinetics. We have also recently proposed a new platform based on polymeric films for the vaginal administration of antiretroviral drug-loaded nanoparticles, termed nanoparticles-in-film, and started the development of nano-microbicides intended for rectal use. This presentation provides an overview of our work and achievements in the field.