Nanoparticles for biomedical applications

We focus on developing and studying nanoparticles for:

  • drug delivery,
  • diagnosis (e.g. as contrast agents in MRI) and sensing,
  • theragnostic applications (i.e. combining therapy and diagnosis).

We deal mainly with nanoparticles based on metal-organic frameworks (MOFs). MOFs are network solids in which inorganic nodes (clusters or metal ions) are linked via organic ligands in an infinite array. They are porous materials and these pores can be used to encapsulate various molecules including drugs and diagnostic agents.

Current project:
"EZH2 inhibition in combination with tumor cell specific drug delivery of ATO in AT/RT" (2021-2024, supported by the German Cancer Aid).

Completed project:

"Preclinical evaluation of arsenic trioxide in nanoparticle formulation for sonic hedgehog activated atypical teratoid rhabdoid tumors" (2017-2020, supported by the Else Kröner-Fresenius-Stiftung).

"Coordination networks for sensing in medicine" (2021-2022, supported by DFG Priority program 1928, COORNETs).

Recent reviews:

Bunzen H., Jirak D: Recent Advances in Metal-Organic Frameworks for Applications in Magnetic Resonance Imaging, ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces 2022, 14, 50445–50462.

Sönksen M., Kerl K., Bunzen H.: Current status and future prospects of nanomedicine for arsenic trioxide delivery to solid tumors, Med. Res. Rev. 2022, 42, 374-398.

Bunzen H.: Chemical stability of metal-organic frameworks for applications in drug delivery, ChemNanoMat 2021, 7, 998-1007.

Recent publications:

Schnabel J., Ettlinger R., Bunzen H.: Zn-MOF-74 as pH-responsive drug delivery system of arsenic trioxide, ChemNanoMat 2020, 6, 1229-1236.

Ettlinger R., Moreno N., Volkmer D., Kerl K., Bunzen H.: Zeolitic Imidazolate Framework-8 as pH-sensitive Nanocarrier for 'Arsenic Trioxide' Drug Delivery, Chem. Eur J. 2019, 25, 13189-13196.

Ettlinger R., Sönksen M., Graf M., Moreno N., Denysenko D., Volkmer D., Kerl K., Bunzen H.: Metal-organic framework nanoparticles for arsenic trioxide drug delivery, J. Mater. Chem. B 2018, 6, 6481-6489.