Welcome to the Figueiredo Lab

Immunotherapy • bone metastatic tumors • musculoskeletal repair

Our laboratory aims to understand the interactions between the skeletal and immune systems with the goal to develop novel therapeutic applications. We focus on integrating biological mechanisms with development of strategies that can leverage the immune system to simultaneously promote restoration of bone and alter immune responses to control inflammation or cell viability. Our therapeutic modalities build on multifunctional osteo-immune cytokines, which can be targeted to bone or inflammatory cells in order to exert regenerative effects

Current Research

We develop several gene delivery and stem cell delivery systems for cytokine-based gene therapy. We utilize sonoporation gene delivery (sonodelivery) and adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells as vehicles. Our lab has evolved to pursue three project directions.

Project 1 is designed to disrupt immune:bone malignant interactions using multifunctional cytokine sonodelivery. We develop more effective therapies for inflammatory bone loss (arthritis) as well as metastatic prostate cancer using intramuscular sonodelivery of targeted cytokines including IL-27 and OP-1. We utilize modern optical and other modalities of noninvasive molecular imaging to detect therapy delivery and efficacy.  

Project 2 examines the biology and potential of adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells (ASC) for tissue regeneration, including bone repair and for halting tumor promotion. Conversely, for understanding how stroma can promote tumor growth, we examine the role of ASC in mediating the effects of environmental toxicants.

Project 3 develops small molecules and peptides with a broad translational application for treating bone, cartilage regeneration, and antitumor effects. Small molecules in development mimic the interaction between Pigment Epithelial Growth Factor (PEDF) and its receptor. Oligopeptide-polymer nanoparticles are in development for osteoarthritis therapy.

Collaborative Interactions: Todd Emrick, U.Mass-Amherst; Russ Main, Dianne Little, Purdue BMS/BME; Hermann Sintim, Purdue Chemistry; Hiroki Yokota, IUPUI

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Campus Seminars

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