Dewan Taslima Akhter1,2, Adrian V Fuchs, Craig Bell1,2, Kristofer J Thurecht1,2*

1Australian Institute of Bioengineering and Nanotechnology and Centre for Advanced Imaging, University of Queensland, Brisbane, 4072, Australia
2ARC Centre of Excellence in Convergent Bio-Nano Science and Technology


Colorectal cancer (CRC) is the third leading cause of cancer related mortality after lung and prostate cancer. Every year approximately 700,000 people die of colorectal cancer.1 Chemotherapy is typically administered by intravenous injection and infusion which often fails to deliver an effective concentration of the drug at the target site, with severe side-effects occurring due to off-target delivery2.
Oral chemotherapy has the potential to open a new treatment concept called “chemotherapy at home”3. The aim of this project is to develop a model carrier for oral delivery of colon targeted anticancer therapeutics that incorporates drug-encapsulated nanoparticles within microcapsules suitable for oral delivery (see Scheme 1).
An amphiphilic block copolymer of PEGMA-PMMA was synthesised and characterised successfully. Curcumin loaded micelles were formed having sizes of 30 and 70 nm with excellent drug encapsulation efficiency of 85.11% and 87.64%. Further, the micelles were encapsulated into an alginate microcapsule carrier to make a favourable formulation for oral delivery. In vitro release studies of the curcumin-loaded micelles showed a sustained diffusional release at pH 5.0 and 7.4. In vivo mice imaging showed promising results.


1 H. Brody, Nature 2015, 521, S1. 
2 R. Prabhu, V. Patravale, M. Joshi. Int J Nanomedicine 2015, 10, 1001. 
3 S. Feng, L. Mei, P. Anitha, C. Gan, W. Zhou, Biomaterials 2009, 30, 3297.

Biographic Details

Name: Dewan Taslima Akhter
Title: Mrs
Affiliation, Country: Australian Institute for Bioengineering and Nanotechnolgy and Centre for Advanced Imaging,  University of Queensland, Australia.
Phone: +61 733460362          E-mail:
Research interests: Nanotechnology, Drug delivery