Our group is interested in developing magnetic nanoparticle composites for improved MRI, magnetic particle imaging (MPI) and hyperthermia applications in cancer therapy. Moreover, we aim to control the magneto-optical properties of our nanoparticles for biosensing applications. Below are some of our currently funded projects in the area of biomedical research:
Funding: Interdisciplinary Alliance Investment Grant: Innovation Pilot Grant – CWRU
Role: PI with Prof. Steinmetz (BME)
The specific objective is to develop the design principles leading to the encapsulation of functional magnetic nanorod and nanosphere cores into VNPs, which serves to accomplish two major aspects of the development of targeted imaging and therapeutic agents: i) the VNP shell offers biocompatibility and surface tunability, ii) the core magnetic nanomaterial provides functionality.
Project Title: Development of Magnetic-Plasmonic Nanoparticle Sensors for the Apprehension, Removal and Treatment (ART) of Microbial Contamination in Water
Funding: NASA Space Technology and Research Fellowship Program
A graduate student research fellowship program that involves the development of highly efficient multifunctional magnetic-plasmonic nanoparticle sensors for the apprehension, removal and treatment (ART) of microbial contamination in water. These NP systems would not only provide benefits for space missions, but could also be employed on the ground in order to prevent water-borne disease outbreaks.
Project Title: Monitoring the Degradation of Implants Using Magnetic Particle Imaging
Funding: Institute of Advanced Materials – Image Guided Biomaterials Development Program -CWRU
Role: PI with Prof. Griswold (Radiology) and Prof. Brown (Physics)
Our goal is to utilize a new imaging modality, called magnetic particle imaging (MPI), to establish an in situ testing method to study the oxidative-related degradation of ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene used in hip implants.
An emerging research focus in the Samia group is the development of novel nanomaterial platforms for agri-nanotechnology. We aim to study the effects of magnetic and non-magnetic metal and metal oxide nanoparticles in the growth of plants, and develop new schemes for their applications in site targeted delivery of agrochemicals needed for improved plant disease resistance, efficient nutrient utilization and enhanced plant growth.
Another major research thrust in the Samia group is the development of novel nanomaterial catalysts for fuel cell applications. We are interested in exploring the structure/activity relationship in heterostructured metal alloy/ titania photocatalysts for water splitting. Moreover, we are developing novel electrocatalysts for direct ethanol fuel cell applications.