Translational Nanomedicine for Abscopal Cancer Immunotherapy

Interdisciplinary Areas: Engineering and Healthcare/Medicine/Biology

Project Description

Local (site-specific) radiation therapy is known to be able to cause a systemic (whole body-level) activation of anti-tumor immunity in cancer patients. This phenomenon (known as the “abscopal” effect) has been known for more than 60 years. However, this concept has not yet been translated into development of a therapeutic strategy. Research in this field is still at its infancy. We propose a project that addresses this gap. This project will involve the following activities; candidate nanomaterials will be rationally designed and developed that potentiate abscopal immunotherapy; the immunogenic mechanism of action of these materials will be validated in animal tumor models; clinical feasibility will be assessed in animal patients with spontaneous cancer. The Gilbreth Postdoctoral Fellow will receive cross-disciplinary education/training in areas covering nanomedicine, cancer immunology, and veterinary clinical/radiation oncology. 

Start Date

January 1, 2019

Postdoc Qualifications

Candidates are expected to have educational backgrounds in materials synthesis for biological applications such as drug delivery systems and nanomedicines. Additional experiences in molecular imaging, cell biology, molecular biology, handling of animal models or biochemistry are highly desirable. Fluency in written and spoken English is mandatory. The Gilberth Fellow is expected to independently work in Purdue University laboratories with the guidance of the above Co-Advisors/Collaborators. 


You-Yeon Won, Professor, School of Chemical Engineering, College of Engineering, Email:

Jeannie M. Plantenga (formerly Poulson), Associate Professor, Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, Email:

Michael O. Childress, Associate Professor, Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, Email:


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4. L. R. Eichstadt, G. E. Moore, M. O. Childress, “Risk Factors for Treatment-Related Adverse Events in Cancer-Bearing Dogs Receiving Piroxicam”, Veterinary & Comparative Oncology 15(4), 1346-1353, 2016 (DOI: 10.1111/vco.12222).

5. C. Wang, J. H. Lee, C. H. Kim, “Optimal Population of FoxP3+ T Cells in Tumors Requires an Antigen Priming-Dependent Trafficking Receptor Switch. 2012. PLoS One. 2012;7(1):e30793 (DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0030793).