Biologically-inspired design (Vaccine Development)

Modular nanoparticles for creation of ‘smart’ adaptable vaccines

Active immunization (vaccination) depends on an efficient means to activate the immune response against specific pathogens. Pathogens are continually emerging and changing; therefore, there is a need for flexible vaccine delivery systems. Our laboratory has focused on the development of such vaccine systems using antigen-loaded nanoparticles constructed from biodegradable and biocompatible, FDA-approved polymer and incorporating adjuvants for immune stimulation. Unlike traditional adjuvants, our nanoparticle design can allow for targeted delivery of antigen to antigen-presenting cells, protection during transit and sustained release of antigen during vaccination.


Fahmy TM, Mellman I, Caplan M, Saltzman WM, Design opportunities and challenges for Nanoparticle Vaccines. Nanomedicine. 2008 Jun;3(3):343-55.