Nanosized particles containing drug molecules can be administered intravenously to increase the drug load of injectable formulations when the drug solubility is limiting, or to alter the distribution and drug release to avoid toxicity or improve the duration of pharmacological actions. As such, these novel complex formulations are
mainly used in the field of oncology.
To facilitate the design and development of such nanoparticle formulations, physiologically based biopharmaceutics models (PBBM) could be used to simulate the drug performance in vivo. While such models have been used for other formulations, a PBBM including nanoparticle transport would be a novel development. Furthermore, basing the model on first principles would enable validation of parts of the model in vitro and make the model translatable between species.
The project Mechanistic modelling of nanoparticle formulations provides funding for senior researcher Tobias Gebäck, Mathematical sciences, to spend two years, half time, at AstraZeneca developing and implementing such models. The project would have a major impact on the development of novel nanosized formulations, in particular for tumour treatment. It would reduce the extent of animal testing required and enable exploratory research of innovative solutions that cannot be studied in vivo.
The main deliverable is a PBBM of the body, including mechanistic models of nanoparticle transport, drug release
from nanoparticles and a solid tumour model, together with suitable numerical tools.
– The opportunity to work on site at AstraZeneca will give me a deeper insight into the use of mathematical modeling in the pharmaceutical industry today, and what challenges they face. I also hope to be able to contribute very concretely with developing models that can be used directly in the development of new drug formulations that provide new treatment options for serious diseases, says Tobias Gebäck.
, senior researcher, division for Applied Mathematics and Statistics, Mathematical Sciences.