While the efficacy of immunotherapy can be staggering, a major side effect is that there can be an ensuing
excessively robust immune response, which can lead to organ damage, neurological deficits, and even death.
In the case of CAR T-cell therapy, it is estimated that between ~20 to 40% of patients experience cytokine
release syndrome (CRS). Given its potential severity, it is critical to monitor patients after treatment so that
steps can be taken to treat CRS before excessive organ damage. While daily blood tests for a biomarker of
inflammation (C-reactive protein; CRP) are effectively performed in the hospital for the first week after
treatment, continued testing is not consistent, despite the fact that onset can occur weeks after and even
months after treatment. What is needed is a point of care device to monitor established biomarkers of
inflammation. We are in a position to take a bold step in sensor development to address this need. We have
developed novel sensors that exploit biphasic droplets that act as a multitude of micron scale lenses to reflect
and refract light. Complex multi-liquid droplets with antibody functionalized surfaces can change morphology
upon binding to analytes, providing strong directional optical changes in response to molecular interactions.
Specifically, molecular interactions can impact transmitted light (Type 1 sensors) and reflected light (Type 2
sensors). Such changes in light intensity and direction can be sensed with a smartphone, avoiding the need for
expensive and cumbersome equipment and ultimately enabling connections between people and their health
care providers. Our overriding goal is to develop Type 1 and Type 2 sensors to detect biomarkers of
inflammation at physiologically relevant levels in whole blood or serum. We also propose to test the efficacy of
integrated emissive/adsorptive dyes as a means for achieving multiplexing. Specific Aim 1 is to reveal the
efficacy of Type 1 sensors for detecting CRP. Specific Aim 2 is to determine the efficacy of Type 2 sensors of
reflected light for sensing CRP. Specific Aim 3 is to develop multiplexing capacity. Having a POC sensor will
not only be useful for monitoring established biomarkers of inflammation, but it will also give rise to
unprecedented depth of longitudinal data. As such, the proposed sensors will open doors to future studies
aimed at leveraging detailed temporal response data to better predict immune-related adverse events. The
proposed “NextGen” POC sensors offer the potential for exquisite sensitivity, quantitative data, and data in
real-time, raising the possibility for droplet sensors to have a broad impact on cancer therapy and prevention.
If you are accessing this page during weekend or evening hours, the database may currently be offline for maintenance and should operational within a few hours. Otherwise, we have been notified of this error and will be addressing it immediately.
Please contact us
if this error persists.
We apologize for the inconvenience.
- The DCCPS Team.