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University of Colorado Denver


Mechanisms and Barriers in Nanomedicine

Breckenridge, CO, July 14-16, 2016

There is a growing sentiment in the field that in order to increase the availability of nanodrugs for patients, the biological, pathophysiological, immunological and manufacturing/regulatory barriers to effective translation need to be addressed.

The goals of the two-day Mechanisms and Barriers in Nanomedicine workshop are to: 

  • provide an educational forum on the barriers to nanoparticle translation; 
  • provide a paradigm shift to overcome these problems; and
  • allow for open discussion among faculty, postdocs and graduate students, to trigger new ideas and concepts.

The workshop will consist of informal, non-concurrent sessions, followed by discussion. Talks will focus on mechanisms, problems, and solutions of the following aspects of nanomedicine:

  • bio-nano interface, immune recognition, and toxicity
  • complement
  • ​in vitro and in vivo barriers
  • no-engineering and design
  • ​metastatic cells, stem cells, and relevance of mouse models
  • regulatory/industrial hurdles

Discussions will focus on questions suggested by the audience.

Submit an Abstract, Topic, or Question

Students, faculty, and postdocs are invited to submit abstracts for posters on mechanistic studies focused on problems in nanomedicine. Of those, one poster abstract will be selected for a brief oral presentation. The remaining abstracts will be presented as posters, with the best poster receiving a prize. The deadline has been extended for post-docs and graduate students through June 30, 2016. To submit and abstract, email​.

Attendees are also welcome to submit a provocative topic/question for the discussion session to the organizers via email​.

An informal atmosphere, wine, and food are guaranteed. To register, please click on the "Registration" tab below. See you in beautiful Colorado!

Stay tuned for full program.

Thursday, July 14

Arrival and Registration

Aerial gondola tour and mountain hike for early arrivers

Welcome reception (wine and hors d'oeuvres)

Friday, July 15


Welcome from the organizers

  • General overview of nanomedicine: Skepticism or optimism?
Morning session 1: Immunological and cellular barriers, protein corona and toxicity
Chair: Thomas Anchordoquy

  • Nanosafety: No small issue (M. Moghimi, Durham University, UK)
  • Complement and immune uptake of nanomedicines: How to avoid unavoidable? (D. Simberg, University of Colorado Denver)
  • Macrophage reprogramming with nanoparticles: Modulating, etc. (D. Boraschi, Research Council of Italy)
  • Nanoparticle-based MRI on tumor associated macrophages: Promises and challenges in imaging inflammation (Natalie Serkova, University of Colorado)
Coffee break

Morning session 2: Tumor barriers and targets
Chair: P. Decuzzi

  • Keynote: ​Tumor-penetrating peptides in nanoparticle targeting (E. Ruoslahti, Sanford-Burnham-Prebys)
  • Where the wild things are: Perivascular regulation of tumor cell dormancy and drug resistance (C. Ghajar, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center)
  • Immunotherapeutics targeting the tumor microenvironment: Opportunities for nanomedicine (Stephen Dow, Colorado State University)
  • Nanobioconjugates delivered through multiple biobarriers regulate laminin-411 -- Notch signaling pathways to fight cancer (Julia Ljubimova, Cedars-Sinai Hospital)


Afternoon session: Engineering aspects in nano drug delivery
Chair: Dan Peer

  • The 4S parameters in the rational design of nanomedicines (P. Decuzzi, Italian Institute of Technology)
  • Hyperthermia approaches for enhanced delivery of polymer therapeutics (H. Ghandehari, University of Utah)
  • Overcoming barriers for nanoparticle delivery using circulatory cells (S. Mitragotri, University of California Santa Barbara)
Coffee break and light snacks

Discussion Session

Free time; Dinner on your own

Saturday, July 16


Morning session 1: Barriers to translation
Chair: Gabriel Lopez-Bernstein

  • ​Keynote: Improving nano-drugs' therapeutic efficacy through their interaction with tumor microenvironment (Y. Barenholz, Hebrew University of Jerusalem)
  • Optimizing nanoparticle delivery of chemotherapeutics - The clinical challenge (A. Gabizon, Hebrew University of Jerusalem)
  • Impact of nanoparticles on the tumor immunologic milieu: Promise and peril (I. La Beck, Texas Tech)
  • Preclinical immunotoxicity studies of nanotechnology-formulated drugs: Lessons learned, challenges and strategy (M. Dobrovolskaia, Nanotechnology Characterization Lab, NIH)

Coffee break

Morning session 2: Barriers to translation 1: Manufacturing and regulatory/funding hurdles
Chair: Shadi Farhangrazi

  • Biologics and peptides by a new encapsulation process: High-loading, high-encapsulation efficiency, and protected delivery as nanoparticles or depots (R. Prudhomme, Princeton University)
  • Translation of a cancer nanotherapeutic into the clinic: A view from the trenches (L. Pagliaro, Siva Therapeutics)
  • NIH/NCI Perspective on nanomedicine climate (D. Farrell)


Afternoon session: Organ/tissue/cell-specific barriers and special topics
Chair: Dmitri Simberg

  • Biophysical barriers in respiratory drug delivery (H. Smyth, UT Austin)
  • To target or not to target: Lessons from RNAi-based targeted lipid-based nanoparticles to solid tumors and leukocytes (D. Peer, University of Tel Aviv)
  • Exploiting cells in the tumor microenvironment for nanovector based therapy (B. Godin, Methodist Hospital)
  • Extracellular vesicles-mediated penetration of therapeutic compounds in solid tumors (JH Park, Kaist, S. Korea)

Coffee break

Discussion session

Farewell dinner


Registration fee includes coffee breaks, reception, farewell dinner, and all meals, with the exception of dinner on July 15.

Registration Fees:

​Delegate Early Bird (April 30, 2016)​ After April 30, 2016​
Students/Postdocs ​$350* ​$450
Regular Attendee  ​ ​$560 ​$660

*Student early bird deadline extended to June 30, 2016.

**Meals for accompanying family members to be announced.

Register now


  • Before May 1, 2016: Full Refund minus $30 processing fee
  • May 1-June 15, 2016: 50% Refund
  • After June 15, 2016: No Refund
The organizers are offering reduced rates to students and postdocs. ​Hotel rooms are limited in July, so register early! Room reservation is separate from the conference reservation. After completing the registration, please vist the Travel and Accommodation tab for information on hotel reservations. 


The workshop will be held at the Beaver Run Resort and Conference Center in Breckenridge, Colorado – a beautiful ski resort town in the Rocky Mountains.

Beaver Run Resort and Conference Center is a full-service property featuring over 500 unique lodging units (individually owned and decorated, from single rooms to family suites). It is the largest conference center in Breckenridge a​nd offers a variety of resort amenities including a swimming pool and spas.

A block of rooms for the workshop has been reserved at a discounted rate. 

If you need a special accommodation (condo, family, disability, etc.), please call (800) 525-2253 and reference the "Mechanisms and Barriers in Nanomedicine Conference" to receive the group rate. The rate for a basic hotel room, which can accommodate two people, is $135 (excluding taxes).


Typical driving distance from the Denver International Airport (DIA) to Breckenridge, Colorado, is about 1 hour and 45 minutes. There are many shuttle services offering routes from DIA to Breckenridge ranging in rates from $45-$65. Here are a few:

Organizers will reserve a disounted rate for the shuttle returning to the airport on Sunday. 


The town of Breckenridge offers a variety of shops, historic sites, and over 150 restaurants and bars. With average daytime temperatures in the mid-70’s and 10% humidity, it is an ideal area for a variety of outdoor activities, including whitewater rafting, mountain or road cycling, jeep and ATV tours, zip line adventures, climbing 14ers or horseback riding. For a more relaxing day, there is a golf course, fly fishing, or hiking.


For questions or to learn more about the workshop, contact Dmitri Simberg​, Thomas Anchordoquy​, Moien Moghimi, or Shadi Farhangrazi.  ​​​​​

Thomas Anchordoquy, University of Colorado, US
Chezy Barenholz, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel
Diana Boraschi, National Research Council, Italy
Paolo Decuzzi, Italian Institute of Technology in Genoa, Italy
Marina Dobrovolskaia, Nanotechnology Characterization Laboratory, US
Stephen Dow, Colorado State University, US
​Shadi Farhangrazi, Biotrends International and University of Denver​, US
Dorothy Farrell, National Cancer Institute​, US
Alberto Gabizon, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem​, Israel
Cyrus Ghajar, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, US
Hamid Ghandehari, University of Utah, US
Irene La-Beck, Texas Tech University, US
Julia Ljubimova, Cedars-Sinai Hospital, US
Gabriel Lopez-Berestein, MD Anderson Cancer Center, US
Samir Mitragotri, University of California, Santa Barbara, US
Moien Moghimi, Durham University, UK
Len Pagliaro, Siva Therapeutics, US
Ji Ho Park, Kaist, South Korea
Dan Peer, University of Tel Aviv, Israel​
Robert Prud'homme, Princeton University, US
Erkki Ruoslahti, Prebys-Sanford-Burnham, US
Natalie Serkova, University of Colorado, US
Dmitri Simberg, University of Colorado, US
Hugh Smyth, University of Texas at Austin, US
Biana Godin Vilentchouk, Methodist Hospital​​​​​​, US


Event Sponsors

CU School of Pharmacy     CU Cancer Center     Quidel