THE LAVERTY LAB: BIOFUNCTIONAL NANOMATERIALS GROUP, QUEEN'S UNIVERSITY BELFAST

FUNCTIONAL PEPTIDE MATERIALS FOR DRUG DELIVERY AND BIOMATERIAL APPLICATIONS

Research papers

Laverty Lab

Our Biofunctional Nanomaterials group research the design and development of self-assembling nanostructures/platforms for biomedical applications based on the building blocks of life, namely peptide and their unnatural variants (peptide-mimetics).

These  structures have the ability to form nanofibrous hydrogels or nanotubular structures with high surface to volume ratios in the presence of specific physiological stimuli (e.g. pH, temperature, enzymes). They have huge potential within the fields of drug delivery and biomaterials with the group’s focus primarily on the development of antimicrobial and anticancer technologies, sustained release drug delivery systems (injectable implants) and molecules with the ability to transverse the biological barriers (e.g. blood-brain barrier, outer membrane of Gram-negative bacteria).

Our most recent work relates to the development of self-assembling peptide-based hydrogel materials for use against infection and as long releasing implants for diseases with medication adherence issues (e.g. HIV/AIDs).

Harnessing a “bottom-up” approach, variation of the primary amino acid sequence of peptides allows structures to spontaneously assemble into ordered nanostructures upon exposure to varying environmental factors/stimuli. The peptide backbone provides a unique primer for tailoring biocompatibility, biodegradability and functionality.

We have interest in developing these technologies with the ultimate goal of translating them into healthcare products for patient benefit, working closely with our academic partners, funding agencies, charities, industry, clinicians and the public.





Our Work

DRUG DELIVERY

BIOMATERIALS AND MEDICAL DEVICES

WOUND HEALING

ANTIMICROBIALS, BIOFILMS AND RESISTANCE

FUNDING

INDUSTRY PROJECTS

REGENERATIVE MEDICINE

PUBLIC OUTREACH

STUDENTS AND EDUCATION

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OUR RESEARCH IS FUNDED BY