Gabriela Rivera Hernandez

Gabriela Rivera Hernandez

Visiting PhD student (Tecnologico de Monterrey, Mexico)

Hydrogel development for in-situ phytochemical dosage for therapy of chronic inflammation-related diseases


Supervisors in Erlangen: Dr. Mirna Sanchez, Prof. Aldo R. Boccaccini

One of the most explored alternatives for chronic inflammation-related diseases treatment is the use of phytochemicals [1], which are a set of heterogeneous bioactive compounds derived from plants [2]. Recent reports have shown that phytochemicals are able to affect cell proliferation and cell cycle regulation by their participation in multiple cell mechanisms [3]. However, the potential use of these phytochemicals as active compounds still presents some challenges, such as the lack of stability, specificity, and poor bioavailability. In addition, it has been reported that phytochemicals generally present some complications for their clinical implementation, such as low gastrointestinal absorption, chemical degradation, and difficulties in achieving the required therapeutic doses due to their rapid elimination from the body [4]. To overcome the problems mentioned above, it is necessary to develop a system for the administration of these phytochemicals in situ. Currently, the most explored materials for in situ delivery systems are polymers, which are capable of encapsulating, protecting, transporting and administering a therapeutic agent (Pandey et al., 2014). Based on the above, this project will focus on developing an in-situ drug delivery hydrogel for the administration of phytochemicals. The project will also cover the complete physical and chemical characterization of the new systems.

[1] Shin, S. A., Joo, B. J., Lee, J. S., Ryu, G., Han, M., Kim, W. Y., … & Lee, C. S. (2020). Phytochemicals as anti-inflammatory agents in animal models of prevalent inflammatory diseases. Molecules, 25(24), 5932.

[2] Zhang, L., Virgous, C., & Si, H. (2019). Synergistic anti-inflammatory effects and mechanisms of combined phytochemicals. The Journal of nutritional biochemistry, 69, 19-30.

[3] Kotecha, R., Takami, A., Espinoza, J.L., 2016. Dietary phytochemicals and cancer chemoprevention: A review of the clinical evidence. Oncotarget.

[4] Pandey, S.K., Ghosh, S., Maiti, P., Haldar, C., 2014. Therapeutic efficacy and toxicity of tamoxifen loaded PLA nanoparticles for breast cancer. Int. J. Biol. Macromol. 72, 309–319.