Cancer and cancer-related diseases account for approximately 13% of human death cases (>7 million per year) worldwide. Plasma-based cancer therapy, as part of the wider field of plasma medicine, is an innovative emerging technique which has recently demonstrated significant potential in curing various types of cancers. Many basic cellular responses (apoptosis, growth inhibition, selective cancer cell death etc.) have been demonstrated following a non-equilibrium plasma treatment. The leading process seems to relate with the unique chemical and bio-active radicals generated, collectively known as reactive oxygen/nitrogen species (RONS). This project focuses on controlling the stratified self-organized complex space charge structure configurations formed at plasma-liquid interfaces and their inhibiting role on cancer cells. These self-organized plasma patterns (SOPs) containing the RONS will be created using a single or multi-pin DC discharge. In-situ probes will monitor/optimize the SOPs and the cells plasma species uptake, allowing for cell disintegration monitoring in real-time. This can give an ‘independent control’ of ion energy/flux or ‘plasma dose’ delivered to the cells, which can be used as feedback to create an adaptive discharge for selective cells treatment. The cells damage will be measured in the form of DNA double strand breaks, overall survival and apoptotic markers. Additionally, the SOPs cell neutralizing effects will be compared to the ionizing radiation treatment from a conventional system to demonstrate possible pathways towards clinical use.
Student requirements for this project Minimum 2.1. BSc in Physical Sciences (e.g. Physics, Experimental Physics, Applied Physics, Medical Physics, Bio-physics, Nanotechnology etc.), Biomedical Sciences (e.g. Biomedical Engineering etc.), Biological Sciences or equivalent
If you are interested in submitting an application for this project, please complete an Expression of Interest form available at the link below and email it to [email protected].
The scholarship is available for 4 years and will include the following: