April 11, 2017
- Paula T. Hammond, Head of the Department of Chemical Engineering and David H. Koch Chair Professor in Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), was the featured guest speaker for the 5th annual Amundson Lecture on April 11, 2017. Hammond is a member of MIT's Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research, the MIT Energy Initiative, and a founding member of the MIT Institute for Soldier Nanotechnology. She was recently elected to the National Academy of Engineering (2017), National Academy of Medicine (2016), and elected as an AIChE Fellow (2016). Among her many accomplishments, Hammond was also elected into the 2013 Class of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. She is also the recipient of the 2013 AIChE Charles M. A. Stine Award, which is bestowed annually to a leading researcher in recognition of outstanding contributions to the field of materials science and engineering, and the 2014 Alpha Chi Sigma Award for Chemical Engineering Research. She has published over 250 scientific papers and holds over 20 patents based on her research at MIT. She was named a Fellow of the American Physical Society, the American Institute of Biological and Medical Engineers, and the American Chemical Society Polymer Division. In 2010, she was named the Scientist of the Year by the Harvard Foundation.
Hammond’s seminar, “Nanolayered Drug Release Systems for Regenerative Medicine and Targeted Nanotherapies” addressed new developments in targeted cancer therapies for ovarian, lung and brain cancers through the ability to uniquely tailor both the independent release profiles of each therapeutic, and the order of release of these molecules to the targeted region of the body. Hammond’s research demonstrates the use of this approach to release or present signaling molecules such as growth factors and siRNA and DNA to regulate genes to facilitate tissue regeneration in-situ, address soft tissue wound healing, deliver vaccines from microneedle surfaces, or administer targeted nanotherapies that are highly synergistic for cancer treatments. These concepts can be translated to nanomaterials design in the penetration of difficult physiological barriers, including cartilage penetration for osteoarthritis.
Hammond (center) is shown with CEMS faculty members after her lecture. The annual Amundson Lecture features a guest speaker that embodies the tenets of Professor Neal R. Amundson in scholarship and innovation in the fields of chemical engineering and materials science. Amundson, department head from 1949-1974, was a visionary leader who pioneered the application of mathematics in chemical engineering.