Medina Kauwe Lab
The Medina-Kauwe Laboratory, led by Lali Medina-Kauwe, PhD, utilizes the cell binding, membrane penetration and intracellular trafficking functions of pathogen proteins to develop novel cell-targeted nanotherapeutics. Currently, the lab studies the cell entry processes of adenovirus (Ad) capsid proteins to guide the design and engineering of non-viral nanoparticles that mimic the high efficiency cell entry mechanism of the virus while avoiding the safety concerns associated with using whole viruses for therapy. The Medina-Kauwe Laboratory has further enhanced these molecules by converting them into molecular missiles to target specific cancer cells for destruction while sparing non-target cells. These molecular missiles are being assembled to deliver several different types of therapeutic payloads to cancer cells, including:
- Genes - used for the expression of therapeutic proteins.
- Drugs - such as toxic agents to destroy cancer cells.
- Small interfering RNA (siRNA) - to suppress mutant or cancerous genes.
Importantly, the Medina-Kauwe Laboratory studies vector-cell interactions, including intracellular trafficking of viral capsid proteins, to identify the molecular and cellular requirements for, and barriers to, efficient cell penetration and accumulation at intracellular targets. These studies have so far identified multiple alternative cell entry pathways that may be used by the same capsid protein, as well as novel, previously undiscovered routes that may be exploited for therapeutic cell entry. These studies not only characterize particular roles that certain capsid proteins contribute to virus pathology but also enable the design of safer delivery agents derived from minimal components of the viral capsid. The lab is expanding its interest to include studies on cell penetrating molecules from other types of pathogens as well as extending the applicability of their nanotherapeutics to other cell targets.
The Medina-Kauwe Laboratory is affiliated with the Samuel Oschin Comprehensive Cancer Institute and Department of Biomedical Sciences.
- Developing a Tumor-Targeted Cell Penetration Protein
- HerDox: A Chemotherapy Smart-Bomb
- HerGa:Tumor Imaging and Tumor-Killing in a Single Nanoparticle
- H2PO and HerSi: Targeted Gene Expression and Gene Silencing
- Biomedical Imaging Research Institute
- Cancer Institute
- Cui Laboratory
- Department of Biomedical Sciences
- Molecular Targeting Research Community
- PhD Program in Biomedical and Translational Sciences
- Women's Cancer Program
Meet Our Team
Learn more about the scientists, faculty members, investigators and other healthcare professionals of the Medina Laboratory, whose dedicated efforts lead to groundbreaking discoveries.
Sims JD, Taguiam JM, Alonso-Valenteen F, Markman J, Agadjanian H, Chu D, Lubow J, Abrol R, Srinivas D, Jain A, Han B, Qu Y, Mirzadehgan P, Hwang JY, Rentsendorj A, Chung A, Lester J, Karlan BY, Gray HB, Gross Z, Giuliano A, Cui X, Medina-Kauwe LK.
J Control Release. 2018 Feb 10;271:127-138.
Sims JD, Hwang JY, Wagner S, Alonso-Valenteen F, Hanson C, Taguiam JM, Polo R, Harutyunyan I, Karapetyan G, Sorasaenee K, Ibrahim A, Marban E, Moats R, Gray HB, Gross Z, Medina-Kauwe LK.
J Control Release. 2015 Aug 31;217:92-101.
Hwang JY, Farkas DL, Medina-Kauwe LK.
J Vis Exp. 2013 Jun 18;(76).
Contact the Medina Kauwe Lab
8700 Beverly Blvd.
Davis Building, Room 3005
Los Angeles, CA 90048