Daniel G. Anderson has been awarded the Wilhelm Exner Medal 2023 for his outstanding achievements. The ceremony and the public Exner Lectures will be held 2023, May 22-24 in Vienna, Austria.
He is a leading researcher in the field of nanotherapeutics and biomaterials and has pioneered the development of smart materials for medical devices. These advances have led to a range of products in clinical development, in particular in the field of RNA therapeutics. He is a professor in the Department of Chemical Engineering, the Institute of Medical Technology and Science, the Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research and the Harvard-MIT Department of Health Sciences and Technology at MIT. He has founded several companies, including Living Proof, Olivo Labs, Crispr Therapeutics (CRSP), Sigilon Therapeutics, Verseau Therapeutics, Orna and VasoRx.
Smart Materials for Medical Devices and the Delivery of Cells, RNA and Genome Editors.
Abstract of his Laureates Lectures:
Medical devices have had a profound impact on human health. Over the past several decades, the materials that we use to build these devices have advanced dramatically, leading to new types of treatments for human disease. An example of this are biomaterials that can be combined with human cells to create living medical devices. We have worked to extend these approaches to develop materials that can effectively hide from the immune system, thereby allowing for the transplantation of therapeutic cells without the need for immune suppression.
A second example are the materials used to create devices at the nanoscale, that can deliver drugs inside of our cells. These have opened the doors to new types of genetic therapies for the prevention, treatment, or even possibly, curing of certain human diseases. Perhaps the most famous examples today are the nanoparticles made from different fatty molecules, and assembled with RNA molecules as vaccines for COVID. However, vaccines are only a small part of the broad potential use of nanoparticles and RNA in human therapeutics. I will describe the development and use of these technologies, as well as their potential as therapies for a range of different diseases.