Synthesis of linear and branched glycomacromolecules targeting CD44
The affinity between hyaluronic acid (HA) and CD44, a protein overexpressed on the surface of many tumor cells, offers promise for delivering HA-based therapeutics conjugates to tumors. In principle, HA-therapeutic conjugates can selectively target tumor cells, increase the solubility of the therapeutic, and aid in its passage through the blood-brain barrier via receptor mediated endocytosis, thus improving pharmacological uptake. We are particularly interested in HA-phototherapeutics for photodyamic and photothermal therapy due to the less invasive nature of these techniques. One of the main limitations of this work is the synthesis of hyaluronic acid analogs that maximize the HA-CD44 interaction. In this session we present our progress on the synthesis of a series of HA-based mimetics of different lengths and their conjugation to phototherapeutics.