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Desai Lab develops nanodevices to aid artery repair
By UCSF School of Pharmacy Editorial Staff / Tue Nov 25, 2014
Research in the laboratory of Tejal Desai, PhD, is creating new kinds of drug delivery devices to reduce the scarring and inflammation that can undermine stents—metal mesh tubes implanted to prop open blocked arteries, including in the heart.
Collaborating with other labs at UCSF and Harvard University, Desai’s lab is developing stents with structures fabricated at nano-scale (billionths of meters) to release signaling compounds derived from fish oil over several weeks. These biolipids reduce inflammation and scar tissue buildup that can lead to a recurrent blockage. The structures can also reduce re-blockage via nano-textured surfaces that discourage cells from sticking to them.
The Desai lab is also developing a method for delivering the anti-inflammatory biolipids by wrapping the stent-repaired blood vessel in a thin film, which delivers the drug through the vessel wall and then biodegrades.
Desai is chair of the Department of Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences, a joint department of the UCSF Schools of Pharmacy and Medicine.
About the School: The UCSF School of Pharmacy aims to solve the most pressing health care problems and strives to ensure that each patient receives the safest, most effective treatments. Our discoveries seed the development of novel therapies, and our researchers consistently lead the nation in NIH funding. The School’s doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) degree program, with its unique emphasis on scientific thinking, prepares students to be critical thinkers and leaders in their field.