Principal Investigator: Dr Jasmina Nikodinovic-Runic

As the prevalence of superficial fungal infections in general population and more serious outcome of life-threatening invasive fungal infections are increasing there is a perpetual and unmet need for development of new and more advanced antifungal therapies. Therapeutic efficiency of so called ‘old drugs’ can be modified and tuned by designing appropriate drug delivery system. The major goal of this research project is controlled delivery of ‘old drugs’ such as polyenes to the specific site of action at the therapeutically optimal rate and dose using advanced biocompatible biopolymer (polyhydroxyalkanoate) as a carrier. During this project, for the first time biopolymeric formulation of two known antifungal polyenes nystatin and amphotericin B would be developed using biocompatible and biodegradable biopolymer medium chain length polyhydroxyalkanoate (mcl-PHA) and validated against a range of clinical fungal isolates. Two different biopolymeric preparations based on mcl-PHA would be developed, namely thin film and microparticles for encapsulation of polyene macrolides nystatin and amphotericin B. Resulting antifungal PHA would represent a novel material to achieve slow release and reduced toxicity of antifungals, and could further be developed into efficient sustained release antifungal bandages and desirable antifungal coatings.