Finding effective breast cancer therapies

Deepali SachdevU faculty member Deepali Sachdev, Ph.D., and her team are using nanoparticles and a novel imaging technique called SWIFT to detect a breast cancer protein called IGFR1 and monitor how certain drugs that target the protein inhibit the spread of cancer.

As an imaging technique, SWIFT has important benefits:

  • noninvasive
  • highly sensitive in imaging the spread of cancer
  • does not expose patients to radiation 

When Sachdev's team combined SWIFT with iron oxide nanoparticles engineered to recognize IGF1R, they found enhanced detection of the protein on cancer cells that have spread.

The ultimate goal for Sachdev’s team is to translate their research findings into precision medicine used in the clinic. They hope to find new biomarkers that will one day allow doctors to tailor breast cancer treatments based on the unique aspects of a patient’s tumor. 

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