Bioengineered Ionic Liquid for Catheter-Directed Tissue Ablation, Drug Delivery, and Embolization

Hyeongseop Keum, Hassan Albadawi, Zefu Zhang, Erin Graf, Pedro Reck Dos Santos, Seyda Gunduz, Rahmi Oklu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Delivery of therapeutics to solid tumors with high bioavailability remains a challenge and is likely the main contributor to the ineffectiveness of immunotherapy and chemotherapy. Here, a catheter-directed ionic liquid embolic (ILE) is bioengineered to achieve durable vascular embolization, uniform tissue ablation, and drug delivery in non-survival and survival porcine models of embolization, outperforming the clinically used embolic agents. To simulate the clinical scenario, rabbit VX2 orthotopic liver tumors are treated showing successful trans-arterial delivery of Nivolumab and effective tumor ablation. Furthermore, similar results are also observed in human ex vivo tumor tissue as well as significant susceptibility of highly resistant patient-derived bacteria is seen to ILE, suggesting that ILE can prevent abscess formation in embolized tissue. ILE represents a new class of liquid embolic agents that can treat tumors, improve the delivery of therapeutics, prevent infectious complications, and potentially increase chemo- and immunotherapy response in solid tumors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalAdvanced Materials
StateAccepted/In press - 2024


  • angiography
  • delivery
  • embolization
  • immunotherapy
  • large animal models

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Materials Science
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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