Biological Evaluation and Chemical Design of Novel Metal

Ciência sem Fronteiras (Science Without Borders)
DIT PhD Project
Supervisor name & contact details:
Name Dr Christine O’Connor
Email [email protected]
Supervisors Profile:
Dr Christine O’Connor has been a lecturer in
the School of Chemical and pharmaceutical
Sciences at the Dublin Institute of Technology
since 2000. Prior to that she had studied in
Dublin City University with Prof Han Vos where
she was awarded a PhD in the synthesis and
characterisation of novel Ruthenium (II)
complexes. She has more recently supervised
postgraduate students in the areas of
‘synthesis of novel drug delivery vehicles’ and
‘the design and evaluation of novel metal
complexes for therapeutic applications’.
Christine is a member of the Inorganic, Pharma
and Biomimetic Reseach Centre (IPBRC) and is
based in the Materials Synthesis and
Applications Lab (MSA) in the Focas Institute of
DIT. For further information and publications
please see:
Research Centre (if applicable):
Inorganic, Pharma and Biomimetic Research
Research Centre website (if applicable):
Supervisors Publication List:
Title of the Project: Biological Evaluation and Chemical Design of Novel Metal Therapeutics.
Project Summary:
A set of potential anti-cancer/ therapeutic metal based complexes have been prepared at the
DIT. The initial biological screening (DNA interaction studies) has commenced but further
screening would be required of the complexes and their organic ligands. The tests would include
MTT assays (3-(4, 5-Dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide) on a variety of cell
lines, both healthy cells and cancer cells, to ascertain the level of toxicity on healthy cells and if
there is any selectivity for certain cell lines. The biological training would be supported by
members of the Radiation and Environmental Science Centre (RESC) and the School of Biological
Sciences at DIT. Other studies to be included are drug mapping using confocal microscopy (to
ascertain if the compound enters the cell wall and if so where it travels to in the cell) and
antimicrobial activity screening against various strains of bacteria. The study may also require
some further compounds to be synthesised for comparative studies of what has already been
made and published. This will involve organic ligand synthesis and complexation to the
corresponding metal centre. All chemical compounds will be prepared in the MSA lab (Materials
Synthesis and Applications)and spectroscopic characterisation will be carried out on electronic
(UV/Vis, Fluorescence and luminescent lifetimes), vibrational (IR and Raman), NMR, and Mass
Spectroscopy’s in the Focas Institute and in the School of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Sciences
at DIT.
Ciência sem Fronteiras / Science Without Borders Priority Area:
Health and Biomedical Sciences