Gang Zheng

Prof. Gang Zheng

Phone: 416-581-7666


UHN Researcher Profile:

Prof. Gang Zheng

B.S., Hangzhou University, Hangzhou, China

Ph.D., State University of New York, Buffalo

Research Interests

The main interest of the Zheng group is to develop two new drug platforms to combat cancer: 1) light-activated intelligent molecules; and 2) nature-inspired theranostic nanomedicine. Our lab introduced the concept of activatable photodynamic therapy agents which enable these photoactive drugs to be silenced in normal cells but are toxic to cancer cells expressing specific signatures. This can greatly mitigate the collateral damage that often limits cancer therapy. By mimicking how lipoproteins assemble and function, we have created new drug delivery vehicles that imitate the structure and behavior of nature's own nanoparticles. Such biomimetic design has enabled direct cytosolic transport of cancer therapeutics, thus bypassing endosomal trafficking that is detrimental to drug efficacy. Our lab also discovered an unprecedented class of phototransducing lipid nanoparticles that expand the role of conventional organic nanoparticles beyond traditional drug delivery vehicles to powerful and versatile biophotonic tools.