2022 news

The Nanostructured Interfaces and Materials Science (NIMS) Group was renamed as the Caruso Nanoengineering Group in November 2020.

Messenger Bio recipient of mRNA Victoria Activation Program grant

October 2022

Cover of Chemical Reviews
Frank Caruso and Denzil Furtado

Congratulations to CNG PhD Student Denzil Furtado and Prof. Frank Caruso, co-founders and directors of Messenger Bio, on being awarded an mRNA Victoria Activation Program (mAP) grant. The mAP grant program aims to support research and innovations that will grow Victoria’s capability in RNA research, development, and manufacturing. Specifically, the mAP grant will enable Messenger Bio to automate and scale up preclinical mRNA manufacturing and expand the capacity of their mRNA engineering toolbox — ‘a crucial piece of accessible infrastructure that help researchers translate their mRNA breakthroughs into potential new vaccines and products’ (The Hon. Jaala Pulford).

To read more, visit https://www.linkedin.com/posts/jaala-pulford_mrna-rna-grants-activity-6992613818522615808-Qo3F

Frank Caruso awarded NHMRC Leadership Level 3 Investigator Grant

October 2022

Congratulations to Prof. Frank Caruso who has been awarded a prestigious NHMRC Leadership Level 3 Investigator Grant to lead a 5-year research program in leveraging nanoparticle platforms to advance nanomedicine. Specifically, the research program will seek to solve major challenges that exist in the development of many nanoparticle-enabled medicines. These include engineering nanoparticles with well-defined properties, understanding how exposure to biological fluids impacts nanoparticle cellular interactions and performance, and the capacity for reproducible and scalable synthesis of nanoparticles.

The Victorian mRNA Innovation Hub

August 2022

Prof. Frank Caruso joins team of leading experts in molecular biology, mRNA biology, drug delivery, and pharmaceutical sciences to establish Victoria’s first mRNA innovation Hub—The Victorian mRNA Innovation Hub (VMIH).

Through the development of next-generation mRNA vaccines and therapeutics to treat a range of diseases, VMIH aims to drive next-generation mRNA innovation and production in Victoria. VMIH is funded by the Victorian State Government ($5.4M) as part of the mRNA Victoria initiative.

VMIH is made up of four nodes led by A./Prof. Traude Beilharz (Monash Biomedicine Discovery Institute), Prof. Damian Purcell (Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity), Prof. Colin Pouton (Monash Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences), and Prof. Frank Caruso (Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology, University of Melbourne).

Prof. Frank Caruso said VMIH would ‘capitalise on skills and expertise across collaborative research programs in mRNA biology, molecular assembly and nanoengineered delivery technologies at the University of Melbourne and Monash University, to drive cutting edge outcomes in mRNA research and cementing Victoria as a centre of innovation.’

Click here for comments by Prof. Chris Porter, Chair of VMIH Management Committee.

To read more, visit https://www.premier.vic.gov.au/victoria-investing-world-first-mrna-innovation-hub

CNG honorary research fellow featured in Journal of Materials Chemistry B Emerging Investigators themed collection

June 2022

CNG honorary fellow Dr Yi Ju’s study on “Protein Precoating Modulates Biomolecular Coronas and Nanocapsule–Immune Cell Interactions in Human Blood” has been featured in Journal of Materials Chemistry B Emerging Investigators 2022 themed collection. The study, co-led by CNG PhD student Shiyao Li, demonstrates the effect of protein precoating of nanoparticles on the biomolecular corona composition and particle–immune cell interactions in human blood.

This themed collection showcases the research of emerging researchers in materials chemistry. Each contributor is recommended by experts in their fields as carrying out work with the potential to influence future directions in materials chemistry with applications in biology and medicine.

CNG review article in Chemical Reviews highlighted on supplementary cover

May 2022

Cover of Chemical Reviews
Cover of Chemical Reviews

A collaborative review entitled “Metal Ion-Directed Functional Metal–Phenolic Materials” has been featured as a supplementary cover of Chemical Reviews. This review focuses the role of metal ions in metal–phenolic material engineering, highlighting the diversity and functions of metal ions in phenolic chemistry. Specifically, the review discusses the principles and physicochemical properties of (i) cation–π interactions between alkali metal ions or alkaline-earth metal ions and phenolic compounds, (ii) coordination interactions that occur between transition metal ions and phenolic ligands to form metal–phenolic networks, (iii) redox interactions between noble metal ions and phenolic compounds, and (iv) dynamic covalent interactions between metalloids and phenolics in the construction of metal–phenolic materials and their potential for biological, mechanical, and catalytic and environmental applications. This review is expected to help unravel fundamental understandings in metal–phenolic systems and guide the design of sophisticated metal–phenolic materials for tailored applications.

CNG review article in Chemical Society Reviews highlighted on front cover

May 2022

Cover of Chemical Society Reviews
Cover of Chemical Society Reviews

A collaborative review on “Nanostructured Particles Assembled from Natural Building Blocks for Advanced Therapies” has been featured on the cover of Chemical Society Reviews. This review discusses the assembly of nanostructured particles using natural building blocks and highlights the importance of such nanostructured particles in overcoming key challenges associated with various advanced therapeutics, including adoptive cell therapy, immunotherapy, gene therapy, active targeted drug delivery, photoacoustic therapy and imaging, photothermal therapy, and combinational therapy. The use of natural (bio-derived/inspired) building blocks (e.g., proteins, lipids, polysaccharides, small-molecule catecholamines, natural polyphenols, cell membranes, exosomes) provides a variety of advantages for advanced therapies owing to their inherent high biocompatibility, natural bioactivity and high abundance, generally low cost, ease of modification, and biodegradability. This review aims to serve as a reference for the rational design of nanostructured particles using natural building blocks for application in emerging advanced therapies.

Past news

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