Andreani D Odysseos received her Medical Doctorate degree from the University of Athens Medical School and conducted her graduate studies and Research Fellowship at theDepartment of Tumor Immunology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute Harvard Medical School in Boston, USA. She conducted a short-truck Residency program in Internal Medicine at Yale University Medical School followed by Clinical Fellowship in Bone Marrow Transplantation at the Department of Clinical Research of Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, in Seattle, USA. Upon return to Europe she served as a Regional Director of the International Agency of Research on Cancer and as Medical and Scientific Consultant of the Bone Marrow Transplant Registry of the Paraskevaideion Surgical and Transplantation Center in Cyprus. Her contribution to scientific and clinical research was acknowledged with an Honorary Research Scientist appointment at the Cyprus Institute of Neurology and Genetics and the participation in the High Level Scientific Advisory Group of the EC-DG Research throughout the FP6 and FP7. She also served in the EC Steering Committee for the Coordination of Human Genome and Cancer Research Programs, in the Innovative Medicines Initiative preparative team and was co-founder and last Chair of the European Federation of Biotechnology Section on Medicines Development. In 2007 she founded and became first CEO and Director, Biomedical Research, of a research-oriented SME, EPOS-Iasis, following a successful participation of the Cyprus Entrepreneurship Competition.Through EPOS she is leading the “Translational Theranostics Network”, a joint undertaking with University of Cyrus faculty and the Nicosia General Hospital with research interests in the area of targeted drug design and development, molecular imaging, drug-receptor interactions, drug delivery and nanobiotechnology. She also holds a Research Faculty position in Biomedical Imaging at the University of Cyprus, directing joint research programs in the field of Molecular Imaging, and Visiting Professorship of Molecular Oncology at the NanoCan Center for Molecular Nanomedicine at Southern Denmark University, also serving as an Advisor for the Clinical Pharmacology program of the St George-University of Nicosia Medical School. She is Co-ordinator or key participant in multiple national an EC-funded targeted nano-theranostic and drug delivery projects with emphasis on pre-clinical translation and training of a new generation of nanomedicine scientists.
Nanomedicines are designed to offer, both to the medical and pharmaceutical communities, a robust platform for personalized, minimally invasive, in vivo drug delivery with on-demand release and therapy, while enabling real-time treatment monitoring. Novel strategies are emerging enabling integration of diagnosis and therapy across many major specialties and sub-disciplines of clinical practice. These approaches require highly interdisciplinary research integration which is the outcome of the synergism between molecular imaging, therapy, and nanomedicine. Potential benefits of nanomedine include, but are not limited to, (i) in vivo assessment of drug bio-distribution and accumulation at the target site, (ii) visualization of the drug release from a given nanocarrier and (iii) real-time monitoring of the therapeutic outcome. An important allusion to the potential of this concept is exemplified by the role of imaging in interventional procedures that at present, appears to be one of the applications that is much closer to clinical translation.
The specificity of Central Nervous System (CNS) environment and the restricted anatomical access raise serious obstacles to the successful outcome of diagnostics and therapeutics of CNS tumors. Inefficiencies in systemic drug delivery and tumor residence as well as micro-environmental selection pressures contribute to the development of multidrug resistance (MDR) in brain tumors. The enormous intratumoral variability and heterogeneity combined with the complexity of the deregulated signaling characterizing pathways might be one of the reasons why most target-directed therapeutics are ineffective against brain tumors. Nanoparticulate (NP) delivery systems are very promising in treating MDR since they (i) are more effective in treating inhomogeneous tumors, (ii) improve the therapeutic index due to multifunctional parameters, (iii) induce preferential tumor accumulation via the EPR (enhanced permeability-retention) effect. The most significant benefit seems to be their potential to divert the effects of ABC-transporter mediated drug efflux and “break into” the blood-brain barrier (BBB). Nanotherapeutic approaches hold tremendous potential for diagnosis and treatment of brain tumors thanks to their ability to target complex molecular cargoes to the tumor sites.Resistanceto targeted therapies attributed to mutated membrane receptors such as truncated EGFRvIII and nucleus-translocated phosphorylated EGFR can be managed with rationally designed carbon nanotube systems (CNT) or charged multifunctional and multimodal NPs. Anew generation of “smart” NPs have been designed as novel targeted delivery devices for new therapies including (i) gene therapy, (ii) anti-angiogenesis, (iii) thermotherapy and most importantly (iv) image –guided surgery enabled by theirtheranostic attributes thus giving high promise for “Next Generation Neurosurgery”. The development of novel nanomaterials would be expected to lead to revolutionary approaches. Fundamental gaps of knowledge regarding the pharmacologicaland toxicological profile within CNS, howevr, remain to be addressed.