Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Biomedical Sciences

First Advisor

Edward Shaw

Second Advisor

Thomas Manning

Third Advisor

Sandeep Vansal

Fourth Advisor

Brandy Sreenilayam


Paclitaxel is a natural plant product derived from bark of the Pacific Yew Tree. The secondary metabolite has been extensively studied and developed as an anticancer agent for the treatment of ovarian, breast, and lung cancer. A significant issue with the drug is its low water solubility⏤ requiring the utilization of drug vehicles for effective drug administration. Two novel paclitaxel-containing drugs, Cu5Fe5PAC and (CUPAC)5GLU12DALB, are synthesized and tested against the National Cancer Institute’s sixty cell line panel for anticancer activity. The drugs are also analyzed using MALDI-TOF-MS, FT-IR, and 1H-NMR. One major concern with paclitaxel is the toxicity associated with conventional intravenous therapy. Trials are conducted to evaluate the efficacy of inhaled vaporized paclitaxel for the treatment of lung cancer. The trials utilize two vapor devices: the KangerTech Top EVOD Vapor Pen and the Volcano Medic II by Storz and Bickel. The purpose of the vaporization trials is to evaluate the capability of paclitaxel to be vaporized into a nanodroplet. The vaporization tests are conducted with a variable temperature setting and at set temperatures with various combinations of propylene glycol/vegetable glycerin. Results are evaluated through the assessment of vapor weight and LC-MS. Vaporization and inhalation allow for the direct application of the pharmaceutical agent. This will lower the dose needed, and as an effect, reduce the side effects.