Engineering & Applied Sciences

Nanoparticle drug delivery may prevent adhesions in injured tendons

Prof. Hani Awad and Assoc. Prof. Danielle Benoit of Biomedical Engineering have received a $2 million grant from the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS) for their project titled "Engineering Scarless Repair of Flexor Tendon Injuries."

The goal of this 5-year multi-PI project is to advance the understanding of the mechanism of scar formation in flexor tendons of the hand, whose scar-mediated healing often leads to adhesions and loss of hand function. The project identifies and maps out the mechanism of involvement of a therapeutic target, and investigates the efficacy of a novel nanoparticle-mediated drug delivery approach to mitigate its effects in a preclinical model of flexor tendon repairs.

Successful completion of this project, which integrates biology, biomechanics, and biomaterials, would have a profound impact on the field, especially since there are presently no pharmacologic or biologic treatments for the prevention or resolution of tendon adhesions.