Ljubimova Laboratory

The Ljubimova Laboratory, led by Julia Ljubimova, MD, PhD, and physician-scientists in the Nanomedicine Research Center in the Department of Neurosurgery are joining forces to advance the field of treatment of brain, breast and lung primary and metastatic cancers, focusing in particular on cancers that have a poor prognosis or are largely incurable with current therapies. Nanoimmunology is a new field, in which nanodrugs are designed to treat cancer with simultaneous stimulation of general and local tumor immune response. Work in the Ljubimova Lab has led to the development of new nanomedicines and nanoimaging agents with high specificity in tumor diagnosis and treatment efficacy based on the latest achievements in molecular biology.

These nanotherapeutic or nanoimaging agents are synthesized on a bio-derived, biodegradable, nontoxic and nonimmunogenic polymer with unique biochemical properties, not achievable with synthetic polymers. The Ljubimova Laboratory was one of the first to introduce a multifunctional macromolecular nanodrug on the basis of rational design and the latest achievements in molecular and cell biology. These nanodrugs can be intravenously administrated and delivered across a number of biological barriers, including the most difficult to cross, the blood-brain barrier. The ultimate goal is to bring these novel classes of imaging and treatment nanomedicines to the clinical practice. Compared with conventional chemotherapy, the novel nanodrugs developed at the Cedars-Sinai Nanomedicine Research Center are more effective for treating experimental primary and secondary tumors by increasing the concentration of the anti-cancer drug directly at the tumor site while decreasing general toxicity and immunogenicity.

These nanodrugs and nanoimaging agents use an innovative delivery method allowing anti-cancer agents to accumulate directly in solid tumors and to help in fighting multi-drug-resistant cells.

The Ljubimova Laboratory is affiliated with the Nanomedicine Research Center and the Neurosurgery Department.