CEN is interested in licensing our inventions for development into useful products in drug delivery, medical imaging, biological research, or for other applications.

Those interested in licensing any of our nanoparticle or biomaterial technologies should contact UCSD’s Technology Transfer Office at The Tech Transfer Office has extensive experience in developing fair agreements that benefit licensees, inventors, and the university. Licensees typically reimburse UC for patent costs, pay royalties on sales, and must ensure diligent commercialization.

Patented technologies

Light-degradable polymer, US patent number 2011/038117

Nanoparticles formulated from this polymer, containing a quinone-methide self-immolative moiety, are capable of releasing encapsulated molecules upon irradiation by UV and NIR light. This design enhances stability and efficacy of targeted delivery. In addition, this polymeric nano-carrier technology may reduce overall toxicity by decomposing into easily excretable fragments. This technology is designed to be versatile; triggering groups sensitive to various wavelengths could be incorporated.

Polymer with dual response for rapid degradation, part of patent application 13/234,969

“Smart” nanoprobes sensitive to either low pH or increased concentrations of peroxide allow deactivation and reactivation of the contrast signal of magnetic resonance or near infrared imaging agents. These nanoparticle imaging agents would enable noninvasive diagnosis, as slightly acidic pH and mildly oxidative environments are common in metabolic disorders such as cancer.

Degradable polymeric MRI contrast agent, part of patent application 13/234,969

We enhanced the response of the ketal chemistry in our pH-degradable polymer to make it degrade in neutral environments and incorporated a gadolinium chelator. The resulting macromolecular MRI contrast agent allows both high contrast and rapid clearance.

Single step polymerization of covalently bound multilayer matrices, patent application 61/609,300.

This invention describes a facile, economical, and scalable method, called density gradient multilayer polymerization (DGMP), for fabrication of complex scaffolds with layers or gradients at the microscale. Liquid-liquid phase segregation through differences in density separates mechanically and chemically distinct materials independently; subsequent polymerization produces stratified matrices. This method would be well-suited for tissue engineering applications to produce multilayered structures.

Light-degradable drug delivery system for ocular therapy, provisional application filed

We have established the usefulness and biocompatibility of our light-degradable nanoparticles for drug delivery in the vitreous chamber of the eye. These nanoparticles could be used to deliver therapies for retinal degeneration, as they would allow administration of multiple doses with a single injection.

Spatiotemporally controlled thermolysis of adipose tissue and skin tightening using NIR, provisional application filed

Injecting a small volume of a solution of gold nanorods allows a surgeon to control the area of fat melting, as only those areas containing the nanorod solution will absorb the corresponding wavelength of near infrared. This melted fat may then be removed using a syringe.

Photothermal properties of confined water in polymeric materials and applications thereof, provisional application filed

Irradiation of polymeric particles with 980 nm near infrared light triggers release of encapsulated molecules, likely by heating confined nanodomains of water within the particles to induce plasticization of the polymer. This discovery means that on-demand release technologies using commercially available materials and low power irradiation.

Intramolecular cyclization for stimuli-controlled depolymerization of polyester particles, provisional application filed

Incorporating novel chemistries into polyester- and poly(ester amide)-based polymers combines the advantages of these polymers, including biodegradability and widespread use in implants and other biomedical devices, with on-demand degradation and release of drugs or other encapsulated molecules. These chemistries may be employed to create materials that degrade in response to a variety of biological or external stimuli.

Activation of MRI agents via encapsulation and disease-triggered release, provisional application filed

Encapsulating solid paramagnetic metal (gadolinium) oxide nanoparticles within bioresponsive polymer nanoparticles via electrospray allows the largest difference between “on” and “off” MRI agent states yet achieved by thoroughly silencing their ability to enhance MRI signal (water proton relaxation) in the “off” state. The responsiveness of the surrounding polymer means these MRI agent complexes are activated by biochemical characteristics of disease, yielding a potentially clinically relevant activatable MRI agent.