Speaker_Q_A_blueProf Taeghwan Hyeon, Director of the Center for Nanoparticle Research, Institute for Basic Science and Distinguished Professor of the School of Chemical and Biological Engineering at Seoul National University, shared some insights on the trends of Nanotechnology in Medicine, and discusses some highlights of his upcoming Keynote Presentation “Development of Uniform-Sized Inorganic Nanoparticles for Clinical Applications”, which will be held at the Inaugural Nanotechnology in Medicine meeting on May 3-4, at the 2018 PEGS Summit in Boston, MA.

Nanobiotechnology is a relative new field. The use of nanoparticles to diagnose, detect and treat diseases and the future potential to make repairs at the cellular level has spawned great interest among the biopharma industry. Can you share your opinions on the current state-of-the-art in Nanotechnology in Medicine trends and developments? What are some exciting new developments in CRISPR that’s worth watching out for?

Nanomedicine will bring significant improvement in quality of life in term of healthcare. Remaining issues are being actively addressed by many researchers in the world. Increasing number of studies are dealing with the clinical translation of laboratory research.

If Nanotechnology in Medicine has such great potential, what then are some of the challenges that the industry is facing in developing it?

The biocompatible nanoparticles are rather complex compared to other therapeutic agents. Many factors including nanoparticle size, size distribution, shape, type of inorganic components, type of capping ligands/polymers and their surface density all affect the imaging performance, therapeutic efficacy, and nanoparticle biodistribution and toxicity. These should be thoroughly examined prior to any clinical translation. Standardization of the characterization methods as well as criteria for clinical use approval need to be established.

Can you share your group’s current research and approach to Nanotechnology/Nanoparticle development? What are your next steps in moving nanoparticle-based therapeutics to the clinic?

We are now working to expand the application area of nanoparticles. Combination of nanoparticles and flexible devices are one of the main topics, not to mention the nanomedicine development for various diseases.

What should we expect to hear at your presentation, “Development of Uniform-sized Inorganic Nanoparticles for Clinical Applications”?

Recent results from our group will be presented. Specifically, I am going to talk about iron oxide nanoparticle-based MRI contrast agents including our recent report on monkey MRI work, and ceria nanoparticles to treat sepsis.

Furthermore, I will present recent advances on the fabrication of ultraflexible and stretchable electronic devices integrated with various functional nanomaterials and their applications to wearable and implantable healthcare devices. For example, I will present graphene-hybrid electrochemical devices integrated with thermo-responsive micro-needles for the sweat-based diabetes monitoring and feedback therapy.

Taeghwan_HyeonTaeghwan Hyeon, PhD, SNU Distinguished Professor, School of Chemical and Biological Engineering, Seoul National University

Taeghwan Hyeon is SNU Distinguished Professor of Seoul National University (Chemical and Biological Engineering) and a Director of Center for Nanoparticle Research of Institute for Basic Science (IBS). Since 1997, he has been working on the synthesis and applications of uniform-sized nanoparticles and related nanostructured materials, and published > 350 papers in prominent international journals (>37,000 citations and h-index of 107). He is Fellow of Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) and Materials Research Society (MRS). He received many awards including the Korea S&T Award from Korean President (2016), Hoam Prize (2012, Samsung Hoam Foundation), POSCO-T. J. Park Award (2008), IUVSTA Prize for Technology (IUVacuumSTA, 2016). He is an Associate Editor of J. Am. Chem. Soc.