Timo Laaksonen investigates how drugs can better help their users

What if we had a more effective cancer drug that had less serious adverse effects? Pharmaceutical nanotechnology is looking for answers to this question.

What are your research topics? 

I am investigating the potential of various nanomaterials and nanotechnology in increasing the efficiency of drug release and delivery. Often, the problem may be with the poor solubility of drug molecules, their poor targeting in the body and related serious side effects, or a disparity between the duration of action of a drug and the need for it. Today, all of these issues can be influenced by using well-planned pharmaceutical formulation and novel techniques.

Where and how does the topic of your research have an impact?

Is the administration of a certain pharmaceutical product difficult? Would it be better to have it taken orally, or to have only one dose taken every other day or once a week? What if we had a cancer drug that had less serious adverse effects? These are the kind of questions we are trying to answer. 

What is particularly inspiring in your field right now?  

Triggering drug release with an external signal, such as light, is a very interesting topic, which is actively investigated here and internationally. This would make it certain that the drug is actually released at the appropriate site and at the right time. I am also keeping a close eye on the development of new antimicrobial pharmaceutical agents and virus-based therapies, even though I'm not personally involved in those efforts.

Timo Laaksonen is the professor of pharmaceutical nanotechnology at the Faculty of Pharmacy.

Watch Timo Laaksonen's inaugural lecture as a new professor on the 10th of September on YouTube.

Read about the other newly appointed professors here.