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Brenner Bioengineering Lab

We are a nanotech lab in the University of Pennsylvania's Departments of Medicine and Pharmacology. We aim to innovate new nanotechnologies and drug delivery tools to massively concentrate drugs at their intended site of action.


Innovation in
Nanomedicine & Drug Delivery

Our goal is to provide solutions to the issues caused by drugs that are intended to work one organ or cell type distributing all over the body where they cause off-target side effects that limit the maximal dose and impede therapy. For a long time, this has been the reason most drug therapies fail in clinical trials. 

To solve this pervasive problem, we employ the following strategies:

  • Innovate new nanotechnologies and drug delivery tools to massively concentrate drugs at their intended site of action, thus minimizing side effects and maximizing therapy

  • Design nanoscale drug carriers using tools from formulation chemistry, bioconjugate chemistry, protein engineering, and computational modeling

  • Test our technologies in rodent and large animal models, as well as ex vivo human organs, with the goal of iteratively improving our             nanotechnology designs so they can reach patients. 


We focus on a massive class of diseases that suffer most from drug distribution problems: Acute critical illnesses (ACIs), which are diseases that can immediately lead to death or permanent organ dysfunction. This includes Acute respiratory distress syndrome (the lung inflammation that kills in COVID-19), stroke, heart attack, sepsis, post-surgical conditions, trauma, and many more.


Since our goal is to get technologies to patients, we believe in the importance of partnering with industry.  We have multiple industry partners we work with closely, providing our trainees with industry experience and contacts.  We also love entrepreneurship, as the lab's PI, Jake Brenner, has founded 3 funded companies (including one FDA approval), and teaches medical technology entrepreneurship at Penn.


Please join us in the fight, building nanotechnologies to defeat these terrible diseases!

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