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Spatially-targeted magnetic particle heating device for tumor ablasion and drug delivery



Brief Description: Nanoscale magnetically activated device for magnetic hyperthermia




Problem: In magnetic hyperthermia, magnetic nanoparticles transform electromagnetic energy from an applied magnetic field into heat.  Existing methods of magnetic hyperthermia do not allow for control over the location of magnetic nanoparticle heating. All nanoparticles within the electromagnetic field will be heated.


Solution: The Issadore and Tsourkas labs have developed a device that could enable precise local heating of magnetic nanoparticles, which could be used for both hyperthermia applications or to trigger the release of drugs from thermally-responsive nanoparticles.  The device includes a static magnetic component, with an alternating magnetic field generated with a copper solenoid.  Static magnets are arranged to generate a sharp zero point where there is no magnetic field; the zero point is not inherently limited by the configuration of the device, so spatial targeting is theoretically only limited by diffusion.  Upon exposure to the alternating magnetic field, the magnetic nanoparticles are only heated within the zero point.  The spatially targeted heating aspect of the device could limit heating to a precise target location (e.g. tumor), without damaging surrounding normal tissue, even if nanoparticles are present.


The device allows for targeted drug delivery and heating with millimeter scale resolution.



·         Non-invasive and localized thermal ablasion

·         Curtail severe systemic side effects of chemotherapies

·         Magnetic fields can penetrate deeper into tissue than lasers

·         Highly localized delivery of therapeutic agents



·         Targeted destruction of tumor cells

·         Radiation therapy

·         Magnetic hyperthermia

·         Drug delivery



Stage of Development:

·         Prototype device developed and proof-of-concept testing with targeted release to volume of 2 mm in diameter


Reference Media:

Manuscript in preparation.



Desired Partnerships:

1.    License

2.    Co-development



            Sarah Johnson




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Patent Information:
For Information, Contact:
Pamela Beatrice
Director, SEAS/SAS Licensing Group
University of Pennsylvania
David Issadore
Andrew Tsourkas