At Project NDX, we believe that everyone should have the chance to play a role in the fight against cancer and the other major diseases of our time. This is why the core objective of this initiative was to make nanomedicine accessible in both the clinic and educational environment.
To make this possible, we have several resources in the works to combine cancer awareness and advocacy with education in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) in order to train the innovators of tomorrow.
Project NDX currently has a collaboration in development with the mAssKickers (www.masskickers.org) Foundation, an advocacy organization focused on promoting thrivership and living a proactive life following diagnosis. Founded by Dr. Eric Galvez, a former state wrestling champion and brain tumor patient, the mAssKickers team gives lectures internationally to empower patients and their families to become proactive following diagnosis and during treatment by providing up-to-date research and clinical study information.
Project NDX will be coordinating an Technology in Medicine panel with leading experts from industry and academia to discuss current breakthroughs that are poised to impact patients in the very near future.
Our second resource is the development of our Nanodiamond Nora and Neal comic book. Developed with the support of the National Science Foundation, this resource will serve as a platform for raising awareness of the power that translational cancer research can have upon the patient population.
The storyline: Nanodiamond Nora and Neal (N3) were created to help keep engines clean as nano-abrasive materials (much like the standard role in nanodiamonds in society today). After learning about other career areas where their unique properties may be helpful (like healthcare!), Nora and Neal went searching for mentors and encountered a clinician and engineer who set out to train Nora and Neal to become a cancer-fighting duo. Traveling through blood vessels with powerful medications in hand, Nora and Neal embark on a an adventurous journey to help people in the areas of cancer treatment, infectious diseases, regenerative medicine, and more!
STEM awareness: This comic book will provide its readers with a glimpse into the impact of how research (basic, translational, and clinical) can be a foundation for dramatic advances in the way that diseases are treated. At the same time, awareness pertaining to careers in medicine, engineering, biology, and other related disciplines and the importance of STEM in education will be raised.
In January of 2017, in collaboration with artist Darron Miya, we debuted the N3 comic book. It is currently available in pediatric clinics at UCLA and our international partners.