Dr. Afreen Allam

Dr. Afreen Allam |Clyto Access

President of SiNON Therapeutics, Raleigh




Afreen Allam (Founder & CEO), a recent graduate from Duke’s Fuqua School of Business, has over 7 years of research in nanomedicine. Her extensive studies on applications of carbon nanotechnology in drug delivery and bio-imaging led to the patent of the Carbon Dot in 2013. She is a graduate of North Carolina State University with a double major in microbiology and biochemistry and holds a masters degree in finance and banking, she has also conducted cell-line studies at Johns Hopkins. At the age of 17 Afreen had her first DNA sequence published and filed a patent at the age of 20. She has presented at numerous biomedical conferences including the Drugs & Diagnostics Conference, Biotech Research Symposium, and National Tech Connect Conference. She was recently invited to be a moderator at a large innovation conference. She was the winner of the Duke Start-up challenge in 2015.



Title: Non-toxic water soluble carbon nanoparticles that can cross through the Blood Brain Barrier (BBB), which will be used for Targeted Drug and Gene Delivery Therapy for Neurological Treatments.

Abstract: The tight junctions between endothelial cells are known to be responsible for the brain blood barrier (BBB) function.  Significant medical research is being done in this field to find particles that can pass this barrier.  The fluorescent, non-toxic, water-soluble spherical nanocarbon  particles with  structure  similar to a layered onion (carbon onions) have been  synthesized by us. We tested these on the  anesthetized mouse  after  artificial intubation in thehereditary stroke disordered  (CADASIL) as well as in GlioblastomaMultiforme (GBM) induced mice. It  was subjected to a chronic cranial window  to  get a baseline using fluorescence intra-vital microscopy . The images were captured before and after the intravenous injection of nano carbon particles. We observed that the nano carbon particles were able to pass through the blood brain barrier (BBB) and had entered the brain without causing any perfusion. This in-vivo study clearly shows where normal dye cannot pass the BBB, our nanocarbon  particles  have successfully crossed this BBB. This raises immense possibilities for drug delivery in the  brain. The nanoparticle was fully excreted from the mouse model with a nice bell-shaped curve within the 3rd and 4th day suggesting safe usage for target drug delivery to treat central nervous system (CNS) diseases. Further, we have also encapsulated these non-cytotoxic carbon nano particles with anti-cancer drug such as Paclitaxel, Docetaxel as well as Donezipil, Cisplatin and Memantine hydrochloride. Our research has shown that such encapsulated drug can be released slowly in a sustained manner. Encapsulated drugs were released based on pH dependent epoxide dominated structure as proposed by Hofmann and Holst’s model. The carbon nanoparticle acts as Trojan horse  by carrying a drug molecule or large biologics and released under physio-compatible environments.  In comparison to the current technology and research our nano particle passes through the BBB due to its amphiphilic nature, which allows any encapsulated drug to passively diffuse through the membrane. Other techniques currently used involve either protein or receptor mediated delivery which would need to be modified for every new drug or molecule used.  ,

Related Conferences :

World Summit on Nanotechnology and Nanomedicine Research