Lebanese Professor Wins Prestigious Award In The Field Of DNA Nanoscience In Canada

News-Medical | McGill University

Hanadi Sleiman, Professor in the Department of Chemistry and Tier 1 Canada Research Chair in DNA Nanoscience, has just earned national recognition for her research in the field of DNA.

According to McGill’s University, Professor Sleiman has transformed the field of DNA nanotechnology and revolutionized precise medical treatments for major diseases, like cancer.

Professor Sleiman received the 2021 John. C Polanyi Award by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC).

This decision came after Professor Sleiman and The Sleiman Group created a unique class of DNA nanostructures for precision drug delivery.

The created nanostructures are non-toxic and are biologically compatible and capable of detecting tumor cells and enabling targeted drug delivery without affecting normal cells.

a) Raw absorbance data for a 15mer polyA-CA coassembly with 25 µM polyA15 and 15 mM CA at pH 4.5, blue lines represent cooling traces and red lines represent heating traces. Unfolded (top black line) and folded (bottom black line) are also shown. b) Processed TREQ data with extrema of each cycle shown as points. c) Van 't Hoff analysis of experimental TREQ points, plotted along with confidence interval of one standard deviation.

Her developments have assisted doctors and pharmaceutical companies to eliminate the toxic side-effects of chemotherapy and produce greater success rates for a range of cancer treatments.

“From this procedure, you get a complex object but made with very few building blocks as opposed to some current technologies in DNA and nanotechnology, which use hundreds of strands to make a complex object,” Professor Sleiman explained in an interview with McGill University.

According to the Canadian university, this is considered a fast-growing field in healthcare that customizes a patient’s treatment plan based on the individual’s genetics, environment, and lifestyle factors.

The innovations of Professor Sleiman are also being used to advance other fields beyond medicine.

Professor Sleiman told McGill University, “We are hoping that this will actually help to make DNA nanotechnology a bit more scalable, a bit more commercially applicable and practical.”

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