The Brain Metastasis Research Group

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Medical Student Research Programme (Aug 2019-Jun 2024), Faculty of Medicine, University of Bergen (UiB). 
Medical student (Aug 2017-Jun 2024), Faculty of Medicine, University of Bergen (UiB).


Induction of ferroptosis in melanoma brain metastases by sorafenib loaded iron-oxide nanoparticles through liposome nanocarriers

Ferroptosis is a recently discovered type of regulated cell death recognized by accumulation of intracellular iron resulting in lipid peroxidation and cell death. Recent studies have found ferroptosis to be a central player in many pathological conditions, however no research has been performed with regards to induction of ferroptosis as a treatment strategy in melanoma brain metastasis (MBM). 

Our goal in this project is to develop a novel approach to treat MBM by inducing ferroptosis though endosomal uptake of iron-oxide nanoparticles loaded with sorafenib. Upon uptake into the tumor cell, the iron-oxide nanoparticles will add to the intracellular iron levels already elevated in tumor cells, and sorafenib will block the cells antioxidant defense, resulting in cytotoxicity and tumor cell death.

The use of antipsychotics to induce tumor suppression in melanoma brain metastasis: A novel and alternative approach to approved neuroleptic drugs

New cancer drugs are constantly being developed, continuously pushing the boundaries of modern medicine forward. However, this research comes at a price, not only in monetary terms, but also in manhours spent and the potential risks that come with clinical trials. A new strategy in cancer treatment is therefore drug repurposing, looking at novel uses of existing and approved drugs.

In this project, we are studying whether antipsychotics or antidepressants can inhibit the development of MBM. Their relatively small molecular size (<500Da), as well as promising results from earlier experiments in our lab prove these substances to be promising candidates for further research into anti-tumor properties. We have selected an array of potential therapeutics to be tested in cell lines in vitro, most being in phase II/III clinical trials or already well implemented in the clinic as psychiatric drugs.