Link to Google Scholar citations page

28) B. Newland, S. B. Dunnett, E. Dowd, Targeting Delivery in Parkinson’s Disease, Drug Discovery Today, 2016 in press

27) D. Zhou, Y. Gao, A. Aied, L. Cutlar, O. Igoucheva, B. Newland, V. Alexeeve, U. Greiser, J. Uitto, W. Wang, Highly Branched Poly (β-amino ester) s for Skin Gene Therapy, Journal of Controlled Release,  2016, in press

26) B.Newland*, L. Thomas, Y. Zheng, M. Steinhart, C. Werner, W. Wang, Preparation, Loading, and Cytotoxicity Analysis of Polymer Nanotubes from an Ethylene Glycol Dimethacrylate Homopolymer in Comparison to Multi‐Walled Carbon Nanotubes, Journal of Interdisciplinary Nanomedicine, 2016, 1, 9

25) B. Newland*, P. Wolff, D. Zhou, W. Wang, H. Zhang, A. Rosser, W. Wang, C. Werner*, Synthesis of ROS Scavenging Microspheres from a Dopamine Containing Poly (β-Amino Ester) for Applications for Neurodegenerative Disorders, Biomaterials Science, 2016, 4, 400

A dopamine containing poly beta amino ester for radical scavenging

Biomaterials Science, 2016, 4, 400

This paper consists of some of the work that Paul Wolff carried out during his very successful Master’s thesis (top grade received). These dopamine containing microspheres not only scavenged free radicals, but also reduced the dissolved oxygen content of cell culture media. (Click here for the journal webpage).

24) L. Breydo, B. Newland, H. Zhang, A. Rosser, C. Werner, V. N. Uversky, W. Wang, A Hyperbranched Dopamine-Containing PEG-Based Polymer for the Inhibition of α-Synuclein Fibrillation, Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, 2016, 469, 830

Inhibition of a-synculein fibrillation by dopamine

Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, 2016, 469, 830

This work, carried out in collaboration with Dr. Leo Breydo at the University of Florida, shows how dopamine inhibits the fibrillation of the Parkinson’s associated protein α-synuclein. Vicky (Hong Zhang) synthesised a dopamine containing polymer by RAFT polymerization which could also inhibit α-synuclein fibrillation, but to a lesser extent than dopamine. (Click here for the journal webpage).

23) B. Newland*, D. Leupelt, Y. Zheng, L. S.V. Thomas, C. Werner, M. Steinhart, W. Wang. Magnetically Controllable Polymer Nanotubes from a Cyclized Crosslinker for Site-Specific Delivery of Doxorubicin, Scientific Reports, 2015, 5, 17478

Scientific Reports, 2015, in press

Scientific Reports, 2015, 5, 17478

 How long would you expect nanotubes of such high surface area to volume ratio to release a drug for? A few minutes… an hour, or even a day? These nanotubes release doxorubicin over a period of a week. They can be functionalized with iron oxide nanoparticles to make them magnetically controllable. These early findings have spurred us to investigate these interesting, low toxic and easy to make nanotubes, so more to come! (Click here for the journal webpage).

22) B. Newland*, P. B. Welzel, H. Newland, C. Renneberg, P. Kolar, M. Tsurkan, A. Rosser, U. Freudenberg, C. Werner*, Tackling Cell Transplantation Anoikis: An Injectable, Shape Memory Cryogel Microcarrier Platform Material for Stem Cell and Neuronal Cell Growth, Small, 2015, 11, 5047

Small, 2015, in press

Small, 2015, 11, 5047-5053

This paper describes the synthesis of microcarriers that have a highly macroporous structure that can collapse during injection and reform once out of the needle. The main drive of this work is to try and create a cell transplantation platform to improve the survival of cells after transplantation to the brain. (Click here for the journal webpage).

21) H. Zhang, T. Zhao, B. Newland, P. Duffy, A. Ní Annaidh, E. D. O’Cearbhaill, W. Wang, On-Demand and Negative-Thermo-Swelling Tissue Adhesive Based on Highly Branched Ambivalent PEG–Catechol Copolymers, Journal of Materials Chemistry B, 2015, 3, 6420

Photoinitiated adhesive

Journal of Materials Chemistry B, 2015, 3, 6420-6428

The last work together with Hong Zhang and Tianyu Zhao before their move to Seattle. (Click here for the journal webpage).

20) B. Newland*, H. Newland, C. Werner, A. Rosser, W. Wang*, Prospects for Polymer Therapeutics in Parkinson’s Disease and Other Neurodegenerative Disorders, Progress in Polymer Science, 2015, 44, 79

cut away view of the mid brain showing the dopaminergic pathways

Progress in Polymer Science, 2015, 44, 79-112

Look at the authors names! We are now married! Our first work together, and the first publication since the start of my fellowship, where we cover several aspects of using polymers and biomaterials in the rodent brain for a variety of tissue engineering applications. (Click here for the journal webpage).

19) A. Aied, Y. Zheng, B. Newland, W. Wang. Beyond Branching: Multiknot Structured Polymer for Gene Delivery. Biomacromolecules , 2014, 15, 4520

Biomacromolecules, 2014, 15, 4520–4527





With the high degree of control over the polymerization process that in situ deactivation enhanced ATRP allows, one can continue the polymer growth beyond the single cyclized knot stage (publications #4, 7 and 18 below) until the knots combine. The disulfide links between the knots give rise to biodegradability whereby the multi-knot structure can break down into smaller knots, for lower cytotoxicity. (Click here for the journal webpage).

18) B. Newland, A. Aied, A. V. Pinoncely, Y. Zheng, T. Zhao, H. Zhang, R. Niemeier, E. Dowd, A. Pandit, W. Wang, Untying a Nanoscale Knotted Polymer Structure to Linear Chains for Efficient Gene Delivery In Vitro and to the Brain, Nanoscale, 2014, 6, 7526

Nanoscale, 2014, 6, 7526-7533









This was the final work from my PhD thesis, whereby I used a disulfide monomer incorporated into the knot structured polymer developed in the work in publication #7 below. Degradation of this disulfide link did not cause the polymer to degrade, but rather “untie” since the covalently bound polymer backbone was not effected. This is a great example of how a polymer that can work well in vitro may perform poorly in vivo. This has prompted us (a collaboration between myself and my then PhD co-supervisor, turned collaborator – Wenxin Wang) to pursue a new direction of research with poly(beta-amino esters), for a high in vivo performance. (Click here for the journal webpage).

17) T. Zhao, H. Zhang, B. Newland, A. Aied, D. Zhou, W. Wang, Branching Matters for Transfection: Highly Branched Degradable Functional PDMAEMA from Vinyl Oligomer Combination, Angewandte Chemie, 2014, 53, 6095

Angewandte Chemie, 2014, 53, 6095-6100

Angewandte Chemie, 2014, 53, 6095-6100






In this work Tianyu took full advantage of the vinyl oligomer assembly approach developed in his previous Nature Communications article to create highly branched polymers for gene transfection. The higher the degree of branching (nearly 10% for the most branched polymer tested!), the higher the transfection capability. The inclusion of the disulfide branching unit resulted in minimal cytotoxicity as the polymer can be reduced to smaller units. (Click here for the journal webpage).

16) H. Zhang, L. P. Bré, T. Zhao, B. Newland, M. Da Costa, W. Wang, Biomimetic Hyperbranched Poly(amino ester)-based Nanocomposite as Tunable Bone Adhesive for Sternal Closure, Journal of Materials Chemistry B, 2014, 2, 4067

Journal of Materials Chemistry B, 2014, 2, 4067-4071







With some tweaking and the addition of hydroxyapatite nanoparticles, the polymer based on dopamine (described in publication 15 below) was tested for its ability to adhere sternal bone. Currently wires are used to stitch the sternum back together after open chest surgery. The lack of rigidity means the healing time is typically around three months. When an adhesive is used (such as Kryptonite (now withdrawn)) this can be vastly reduced, but comes at the price of added complications if emergency re-entry into the chest is required soon after surgery (for example, unexpected internal bleeding etc). Instead, this dopamine based polymer sets slowly, but cures strongly and adheres well to bone even in wet conditions. (Click here for the journal webpage).


15) H. Zhang, L. P. Bré, T. Zhao, Y. Zheng, B. Newland*, W. Wang*. Mussel-Inspired Hyperbranched Poly(amino ester) Polymer as Strong Wet Tissue Adhesive, Biomaterials, 2013, 35, 711

Biomaterials, 2014, 35, 711-719

Biomaterials, 2014, 35, 711-719









A polymer composed of dopamine shows promise as a tissue adhesive because a variety of crosslinkers can be used, such as fibrinogen, allowing controllable curing rate, low exotherm, low toxicity and the ability to adhere in wet conditions. (Click here for the journal webpage).

14) D. B. Hoban‡, B Newland‡, T. Moloney, L. Howard, A. Pandit, E. Dowd (‡ these authors contributed equally to the work). The Reduction in Immunogenicity of Neurotrophin Overexpressing Stem Cells After Intra-striatal Transplantation by Encapsulation in an In Situ Gelling Collagen Hydrogel, Biomaterials, 2013, 34, 9420


Biomaterials, 2013, 34, 9420-9429

Biomaterials, 2013, 34, 9420-9429









This was work performed with my then co-supervisor Dr. Eilís Dowd and her group to investigate whether the use of a collagen hydrogel could increase the survival of mesenchymal stem cells after transplantation to the brain. The stem cells were genetically modified to over produce glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor, a protein which holds promise for protecting dopaminergic neurons (those lost during Parkinson’s disease). Although no improvement in survival was shown, a reduction in the density of the host response was observed surrounding the transplant. I think that materials to assist transplantation could provide much benefit if cells are pre-adhered to the material prior to transplantation. This work featured as part of a review (Advances in hydrogel delivery systems for tissue regeneration). (Click here for journal webpage).


13) Y. Zheng, T. Zhao, B. Newland, J. Poly, W. Wang. Controlled Homopolymerization of Multi-vinyl Monomers: From ATRA to Dendritic Polymers, Chemical Communications, 2013, 49, 10124

Chemical Communications, 2013, In Press

Chemical Communications, 2013, 49, 10124-10126







This work shows that conventional ATRP gives rise to poor monoadducts or small oligomer formation. Thus long primary chains are formed. To increase the branching ratio, we sought an optimal monoadduct, thus the combination of these small chains would give a far more branched structure. Atom transfer radical addition (ATRA), when tweeked to use a large proportion of Copper I catalyst (as with the Deactivation Enhanced ATRP in my previous publications), allows good small oligomer formation (small chains) and thus a hyperbranched polymer with a high branching ratio of 28% was achieved. (Click here for the journal webpage).


12) L. Yao, W. Daly, B. Newland, S. Yao, W. Wang, B. K. K. Chen, N. Madigan, A. Windebank, A. Pandit. Improved axonal regeneration of transected spinal cord mediated by multichannel collagen conduits functionalized with neurotrophin-3 gene, Gene Therapy, 2013, 20, 1149

Gene Therapy, 2013 In Press

Gene Therapy, 2013, 20, 1149-1157








In vivo analysis of non-viral gene delivery to the spinal cord via a collagen scaffold. Dr. Li Yao used the cyclized knot polymer to deliver the neurotrophin-3 gene to promote axonal regeneration. (Click here for the journal webpage).


11) B. Newland, E. Dowd, A. Pandit. Biomaterial Approaches to Gene Therapies for Neurodegenerative Disorders of the CNS, Biomaterials Science, 2013, 1, 556

Biomaterials Science, 2013, 1, 556-576







My first review paper covering every (I’m pretty sure!) non-viral transfection study in the brain. These are categorized into four tables, liposomal, polymeric, other and targeted transfection agents. In addition, ex-vivo approaches are mentioned, with particular note on using biomaterials to increase cell survival post transplantation, currently a big problem. (Click here for journal webpage).


10) B. Newland, M. Abu-Rub‡, M. Naughton, Y. Zheng, A. Pinoncely, E. Collin, E. Dowd, W. Wang, A. Pandit (‡ these authors contributed equally to the work). GDNF Gene Delivery Via A 2-(Dimethylamino)ethyl Methacrylate Based Cyclized Knot Polymer For Neuronal Cell Applications, ACS Chemical Neuroscience, 2013, 4, 540

Polymer Transfection of GDNF to astrocytes

ACS Chemical Neuroscience, 2013, 4, 540–546









This was work was carried out jointly with Mohammad Abu-Rub where we used the polymer developed in publication 7 to transfect Neu7 astrocytes (developed in Prof. J. Fawcett’s lab). They form a neuroinhibitory environment, so after seeding dorsal root ganglia on top of pre-seeded astrocytes we measured the neurite lengths with and without the addition of the growth factor GDNF gene therapy. Treatment with the GDNF encoding gene via the cyclized polymer resulted in extended neurite outgrowth, similar to that of a high dose of GDNF recombinant protein. (Click here for journal webpage). See also the cover art for that issue (April 2013).


9) B. Newland, T. Moloney, S. Browne, G. Fontana, M. Abu-Rub, E. Dowd, A. Pandit, The Neurotoxicity Of Gene Vectors And Its Amelioration By Packaging With Collagen Hollow Spheres, Biomaterials, 2013, 34, 2130

The toxicity of non viral gene vectors towards the brain (striatum) was compared with an adeno-associated virus. The non-viral vectors caused smaller areas of gross tissue loss than the viral vector, and could be ameliorated further by use of collagen spheres developed in Prof. Abhay Pandits lab. Transfection was not measured in this study but some of our previous experiments show that the commercially available non-viral vectors are so far behind viral transfection in the striatal region of the brain.  (Click here for the journal webpage).


8) D. Velasco, G. Réthoré, B. Newland, J. Parra, C. Elvira, A. Pandit, L. Rojo, J. San Román, Low polydispersity (N-ethyl Pyrrolidine Methacrylamide-co-1-vinylimidazole) Linear Oligomers For Gene Therapy Applications, European Journal of Pharmaceutics and Biopharmaceutics, 2012, 82, 465


European Journal of Pharmaceutics and Biopharmaceutics, 2012, 82, 465-474







This was work in collaboration with Dr. Diego Velasco who was then a visiting PhD student in our lab from the Institute of Polymer Science & Technology, Madrid, Spain. His self synthesized EPA monomer was combined with 1-vinylimidazole to produce a linear transfection agent with low toxicity and good haemocompatibility. (Click here for journal webpage).


7) B. Newland‡, Y. Zheng‡, J. Yao, H. Cao, M. Abu-Rub, W. Wang and A. Pandit (‡ these authors contributed equally to the work). Single Cyclized Molecule Versus Single Branched Molecule: A Simple And Efficient 3D “Knot” Polymer Structure For Nonviral Gene Delivery, Journal of the American Chemical Society, 2012, 134, 4782


Journal of the American Chemical Society, 2012, 134, 4782–4789







This originally started out to be a full study, continuing from my first publication (see Chem Comm below), where I would optimise the polymer for gene delivery and analyse it over a range of cell types. However, subsequent elucidation by Drs. Yu Zheng and Wenxin Wang of the polymer structures we were forming made it clear that internal cyclization was occuring. Furthermore, in an attempt to gain higher molecular weights more suitable for gene delivery, I radically increased the monomer to initiator ratio from 50:1 to 1000:1 not really realising that I had just used the optimal conditions for internal cyclization. Single chains were formed which wrapped to themselves and created a highly effective polymer for gene transfection. With PEG added into the structure in the “one pot” reaction, these polymers also showed low toxicity. They were compared to SuperFect® so as to compare two 3D structures. (Click here for journal webpage).


6) Y. Zheng, B. Newland, H. Tai, A. Pandit, W. Wang. Single Cyclized Molecule Structures From RAFT Homopolymerization Of Multi-Vinyl Monomers, Chemical Communications, 2012, 48, 3085


Chemical Communications, 2012, 48, 3085-3087





The deactivation enhanced nature of Dr. Wenxin Wang’s ATRP stems from the deactivating CuII catalyst remaining in the reaction vessel. However, interestingly RAFT has a natural deactivating species in the form of the RAFT agent. It thus makes RAFT an attractive tool for polymerisation with multi-vinyl monomers. A student asked me why no  homopolymerisation of EGDMA had been done by RAFT before. It can be done, easily… (Click here for journal webpage).


5) A. O. Saeed‡, B. Newland‡, A. Pandit and W. Wang (‡ these authors contributed equally to the work). The Reverse Of Polymer Degradation: In Situ Crosslinked Gel Formation Through Disulfide Cleavage, Chemical Communications, 2012, 48, 585


Chemical Communications, 2012, 48, 585-587








An interesting observation when Dr. Aram Saeed was synthesizing degradable PEG based polymers using a disulphide branching agent. We found that due to the large amount of free vinyl groups left in the structure, when the disulphide bond was cleaved in glutathione (to create -SH) these thiols reacted with the free vinyl groups and crosslinked the polymer into nanogels. Could be interesting to investigate further. (Click here for journal webpage).


4) Y. Zheng, H. Cao, B. Newland, Y. Dong, A. Pandit and W. Wang. 3D Single Cyclized Polymer Chain Structure From Controlled Polymerization of Multi-Vinyl Monomers: Beyond Flory-Stockmayer Theory, Journal of the American Chemical Society, 2011, 133,  13130


Journal of the American Chemical Society, 2011, 133, 13130–13137

Here’s where the real leap in our understanding is demonstrated. As noted in the description of my first publication (see Chem Comm below), our experiments with the di-vinyl monomer EGDMA at 10% of monomer feed showed a low polydispersity index, much more typical to that of a linear polymer chain, not a hyperbranched polymer. Instead, here we use 100% EGDMA (homopolymerisation), and by Deactivation Enhanced ATRP developed by Dr. Wenxin Wang, we show that actually single polymer chains are produced that link to themselves via intramolecular crosslinks (i.e. within the same chain). Being based in Ireland we initially termed these Celtic Knots as an easy way to envisage the continually looping structure (see blog/Irish Times press article). When the branching monomer EGDMA was swapped for a degradable monomer, the knot could indeed be “untied” into linear chains. (Click here for journal webpage).


3) C. Holladay, M. Keeney, B. Newland, A. Mathew, W. Wang and A. Pandit. A Reliable Method for Detecting Complexed DNA In Vitro, Nanoscale, 2010, 2, 2718

C. Holladay, M. Keeney, B. Newland, A. Mathew, W. Wang and A. Pandit. A Reliable Method for Detecting Complexed DNA In Vitro. Nanoscale, 2010, 2, 2718-2723 (IF 5.914)

Nanoscale, 2010, 2, 2718-2723

Work in collaboration with my colleagues showing that detecting DNA via Cy5 labeling resulted in more accurate detection when complexed to cationic polymers or liposomes. The PicoGreen® dye would not fluoresce when DNA was bound to SuperFect® or PEI, but would with LipoFectin™ and our lab synthesized polymers (from publication one). (Click here for journal webpage).


2) Y. Dong, P. Gunning, H. Cao, A. Mathew, B. Newland, A. O. Saeed, J. P. Magnusson, C Alexander, H Tai, A. Pandit and W. Wang. Dual Stimuli Responsive PEG Based Dendritic Polymers, Polymer Chemistry, 2010, 1, 827

Polymer Chemistry, 2010, 1, 827-830








Work by Yixiao Dong showing that by adjusting the PEG chain length thermoresponsive polymers that gel upon nearing body temperature can be synthesised. Furthermore, due to the presence of free vinyl groups, these can be crosslinked by UV light. (Click here for journal webpage).


1) B. Newland, H. Tai, Y. Zheng, D. Velasco, A. Di Luca, S. M. Howdle, C. Alexander , W. Wang and A. Pandit, A Highly Effective Gene Delivery Vector – Hyperbranched Poly(2-(Dimethylamino) Ethyl Methacrylate) From In-situ Deactivation Enhanced ATRP, Chemical Communications, 2010, 46, 4698

Chemical Communications, 2010, 46, 4698-4700






My first publication, showing how the simple synthesis mechanism, developed by my then co-supervisor Dr. Wenxin Wang, could be used to create polymers with a high amount (10%) of of the branching monomer EGDMA. Often, when over 1% of a branching monomer is used in a co-polymer system, it is difficult to stop gelation occurring. A “hyperbranced” polymer was produced that used DMAEMA to wrap up DNA into nanoparticles to deliver it to fibroblast cells. I say “hyperbranched” in inverted commas because with such a low polydispersity index (<1.5 for most of the synthesis) clearly something other than simple chain combination was occurring (see publication 4 and 7). (Click here for journal webpage).