The MULTIFUN consortium focuses on the development and validation of new systems based upon minimal invasive nanotechnology for the early and selective detection and elimination of breast and pancreatic cancer with reduced side effects. The project will deploy a strategy based on the multifuntionalisation of magnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (MNP), combining diagnostic and therapeutic features against breast and pancreatic cancer and cancer stem cells.
The MULTIFUN therapeutic approach is multimodal, combining the nanoparticle heating induced by alternating magnetic fields with intracellular drug delivery in order to reinforce the therapeutic outcome. Since nanoparticles can be detected through magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), they can also be used as contrast agents for cancer cell detection. In this way, MULTIFUN combines therapeutic and diagnostic aspects leading to a potential “theragnostics” tool.
A key point of the project is to assess the safety and toxicicty of the developed nanoparticles. Thus, MULTIFUN includes a broad set of in vitro and in vivo toxicity and biodistribution tests in different animal models including mice, rats and pigs.
Finally, in order to improve the translation of the outcomes and their economic potential, the consortium also will study the scale-up of the production methods for the main components.
The Scientific Coordination of the project is led by the Madrid Institute for Advanced Studies in Nanoscience (IMDEA Nanociencia). Atos Spain S.A is the Administrative Coordinator and Contract Manager.
The research is partly funded by the European Community’s Seventh FrameworkProgramme under grant agreement no. 262943.