Holger Frey talks with
ScienceWatch.comand answers a few questions
about this month's Fast Moving Front in the field of
Article: Dendritic polymers in biomedical
applications: From potential to clinical use in diagnostics
, H;Haag, R
Journal: ANGEW CHEM INT ED, 41 (8): 1329-1334 2002
Addresses: Univ Freiburg, Inst Makromol Chem, Stefan Meier
Str 21-31, D-79104 Freiburg, Germany.
Univ Freiburg, Inst Makromol Chem, D-79104 Freiburg,
Univ Freiburg, Freiburger Mat Forschungszentrum, FMF,
D-79104 Freiburg, Germany.
Why do you think your paper is highly
The work is highly cited since it addresses the central field of
application for dendrimers, that of medicine and biology. Since the
synthesis is very demanding (multi-step) and the cost of such materials is
high, they are unlikely to be successful in materials science, but bear
promise for biomedical application. Besides, this review is stringently
organized into the areas "diagnostics" and "therapy," which is attractive
for the reader who wants to get a quick grasp of the matter. And, of
course, it is a review article, not an original publication.
Does it describe a new discovery, methodology, or
synthesis of knowledge?
"The paper is
a review article that gives a
summary of the state-of-the-art in
The paper is a review article that gives a summary of the state-of-the-art
in the field. Generally speaking, Angewandte Chemie is a mixed
journal containing review articles, features, and original contributions.
The reviews and features are of course cited very often, which helps to
enhance the impact factor of Angewandte Chemie.
Would you summarize the significance of your paper in
The review gives a clear idea, how dendrimers, perfectly cascade-branched
polymer structures with a high number of end groups—in fact,
resembling perfect trees—can be of use for medical applications,
e.g., to obtain improved contrast agents for diagnostic purposes (MRI) or
to encapsulate drugs.
How did you become involved in this research and were
there any particular problems encountered along the way?
The authors have broad experience in the area of dendrimers and
hyperbranched polymers and had already published numerous original
contributions in this field prior to the review article.
Where do you see your research leading in the
Toward the development of new, functional polymer materials that are of
real-world importance for the urgent problems we face in the 21st century
at many frontiers.
Do you foresee any social or political implications for
Improvement of therapies and diagnostic tools to cure diseases will always
have such implications.
Prof. Dr. Holger Frey
Institute of Organic Chemistry
University of Mainz