Danish National Research Foundation Niels Bohr Professors Awarded at Elite Forsk Conference

Sunday, February 10, 2013

See http://www.eliteforsk.dk/modtagere/prismodtagere-2013/danmarks-grundforskningsfonds-nye-centerledere...

David Needham

Professor / PhD., University of Nottingham, 1981 (Physical Chemistry) / B.Sc. (Hons), Trent Polytechnic, 1975 (Applied Chemistry)

Discipline
Physical Chemistry, interface and colloid chemistry, materials science, pharmacy

Project name / acronym
Center for Single Science and Engineering / SPSE

Danish institution and the home institution
Department of Physics, Chemistry and Pharmacy, University of Southern Denmark, Odense, Denmark 
Department of Mechanical Engineering and Material Science, Duke University, Durham, NC, USA

Research Officer for the Danish institution (RIC)

Professor, DSc. Ole G. Mouritsen

Brief description of research
SPSE is an interdisciplinary research center that works with experimental and theoretical research in the field of colloid and interface science.Center's main approach is based on the use of mechanical manipulation techniques using micropipettes with which you can create, study and characterize materials and their interfaces in the form of well-defined microparticles. The microparticles may be comprised of conventional materials such as metals, ceramics, plastics, and composite materials, but also biologically relevant material, such as lipids, carbohydrates, amino acids, nucleotides, salts, and water. As the materials may have different chemical compositions and different states, and thus many types of interfaces, there is a very large number of different combinations. There are obvious applications in materials chemistry, processing of materials, food, nano-and biotechnology, and advanced pharmacy.

The research challenges
The main challenge is to provide a fundamental understanding of how materials and interfaces behave. The ambition is to study the colloidal range of nature on a scale of one or a few colloidal particles. The experience understanding can be used in physics and chemistry of soft materials; nucleation and growth of precipitates, crystals and glasses; development of advanced drug-delivery systems; mixtures of materials in the form of complex emulsions in food technology and pharmacy, and mechanical manipulation of individual cells and studies of cell interactions with each other or with other surfaces.

The long-term prospects with Niels Bohr professorship
It is the Centre's plan to create a deeper understanding of the physics and chemistry of micro-and nanoparticles. One area of particular interest is the development of novel anti-cancer therapies based on the endogenous processes which the body uses for the transport of material, and particularly the ability of cells to contract naturally occurring fat-containing nanoparticles, the so-called low-density lipoproteins (LDL) . The plan is to design, produce and test new formulations for anti-cancer drugs, raised through these endogenous pathways by 'putting the drug in cancer cells' food.' The reason why this is important is that cancerous cells, in order to be able to support their own uncontrolled, rapid growth, take up LDL by increasing the amount of their LDLreceptorer (LDLR). It turns out that the cancer cells, which occupies most LDL are also the cells which are most frequently leads to metastasis. For example, a woman with LDLR + ve breast cancer a worse prognosis for survival than if she were LDLR-ve.Center research will be conducted in collaboration with researchers from different departments at the University of Southern Denmark.

Place of birth, school and municipality of residence in Denmark
Oldham, Lancashire, UK. Count Hill Grammar School (High School).Location: Odense

Contact Information
David Needham: email needham@sdu.dk

Size of grant from the Danish National Research Foundation: 29 million DKK