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"Nanoparticles in BNCT" by Simonetta Geninatti (Mon, 21 Nov 2022)

The Seminars and Training Committee kindly invites you to the following ICMAB Periodical Lecture:

09 November 2022

Nanoparticles in Boron Neutron Capture Therapy (BNCT)

by Simonetta Geninatti Crich, Molecular Biotechnology and Health Sciences department, University of Torino (Italy)

Monday, 21 November 2022
11 AM
ICMAB - Sala d'Actes Carles Miravitlles


Boron Neutron Capture is a binary chemio-radiotherapeutic modality, early proposed to treat cancer, based on the accumulation of boron containing agents followed by neutron irradiation. It has been estimated that about 109 boron atoms per tumour cell are needed for an effective treatment of cancer. It is thus necessary to develop a non-invasive imaging method to quantify the boron concentration in the tumour before irradiation in order to improve and optimize the treatment. To this purpose, theranostic systems, that combine delivery of drugs and imaging agents within a single non-toxic and biodegradable nanovector, represents one of the most promising option. In this study, biodegradable polymers such as poly-lactic and glycolic acid (PLGA), Low Density Lipoproteins (LDL) and apoferritin have been considered.

Among these, nanocarriers of natural origin can act as dual-functional tools exploiting “the innate “targeting ability of the protein cage to tumors and the ability in loading metal and boron containing probes within the internal core or on their surface to perform imaging guided BNCT. The nanoprobes were tested for the treatment of different tumours and in particular for pulmonary metastasis and mesothelioma. Against these tumours, conventional radiotherapies have limited effectiveness due to the presence of several radiosensitive tissues, which limit the maximum dose deliverable to the malignant nodules. The advantage of BNCT is that it can potentially affect only tumour cells with a lethal dose of radiations, even in case of spreading and infiltrative cases.


Prof. Simonetta Geninatti Crich received her degree in Chemistry in 1993 from the University of Torino (Italy) and her Ph.D in Biochemical Sciences in 1997 at the same University with prof. S. Aime. Then she took a research technician position at the Interuniversity Consortium of Research in Metal Chemistry in Biological Systems (Bari) and then at the Chemistry Department of the University of Torino. From 2016, she is Associate Professor of General and Inorganic Chemistry at the Molecular Biotechnology and Health Sciences department. She is co-author of 117 original scientific papers in peer reviewed journals (H-index 40), 5 patents.

She is member of ISNCT (International Congress on Neutron Capture Therapy) Executive Board and of the GIDRM (Italian Magnetic Resonance Discussion Group) Executive Board. She is the local coordinator of two H2020 Fetopen projects: NECTAR (N. 964934) and PRIMOGAIA (N. 863099). She was principal investigator in the UE HORISON 2020 ATTRACT project in 2019-2020. Her current research is focused on the development and preparation of nanosized theranostic agents for the selective delivery of carborane and MRI agents for Boron Neutron Capture treatments of cancer and Alzheimer disease.

Hosted by Clara Viñas, Inorganic Materials and Catalysis Group, ICMAB-CSIC

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