Damon Runyon Researchers

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Vitor Mori, PhD

New technologies developed in the last decade have enabled chemotherapy to be delivered directly to lung tumors intratumorally in contrast to systemic delivery that affects the whole body. Recent studies have shown a partial or complete response ratio of 71% with significantly fewer side effects for patients treated intratumorally with cisplatin. Dr. Mori is modeling cisplatin pharmacodynamics following injections, taking into consideration the heterogeneity of the tumor microenvironment. This research aims to optimize drug delivery strategy to enhance targeting tumor cells while reducing side effects. 

Using segmented high-resolution CT images, Dr. Mori assigns a set of features to each voxel of the tumor (diffusivity, clearance rate, and intracellular threshold concentration needed to induce cell apoptosis). He then simulates the competing physical mechanisms inside the tumor to assess the total tumor volume with an intracellular concentration above the threshold to estimate the minimal required dose based on the tumor morphology and the number of injections. The model is implemented using MatLab.

Project title: "EBUS-TBNI of cisplatin optimization in heterogeneous lung tumors"
Institution: University of Vermont
Award Program: Quantitative Biology Fellow
Sponsor(s) / Mentor(s): Jason H.T. Bates, PhD, DSc, and C. Matthew Kinsey, MD
Cancer Type: Kidney and Bladder, Lung
Research Area: Biomedical Engineering