Farrukh Aqil, Ph.D.


B. Sc. (Chemistry) Aligarh Muslim University, India, 1998
M. Sc. (Ag. Microbiology) Aligarh Muslim University, India, 2000
Ph. D. (Microbiology) Aligarh Muslim University, India, 2006
Postdoctoral Fellowship, Cancer Chemoprevention Group, Brown Cancer Center, University of Louisville, Louisville, 2007-2012

Curriculum Vitae

Current Positions:

Associate Professor, Department of Medicine, University of Louisville School of Medicine
Member, Brown Cancer Center

Contact Information:

Delia Baxter Research Building, Room 304B
University of Louisville
580 S. Preston St
Louisville, KY 40202, USA
Phone 502-852-7315
Fax 502-852-3842
Email: farrukh.aqil@louisville.edu

Research Description

Dr. Aqil’s research focus is on cancer chemoprevention and treatment, primarily of breast, lung and ovarian cancers, using both standard chemotherapeutic drugs and agents of natural origin like spices, berries and berry bioactives. Dr. Aqil is currently studying the role of naturally occurring nanoparticles “Exosomes” as drug delivery vehicle. This field is the most recent in cancer research and can make a paradigm change in the delivery of natural compounds and chemotherapeutic drugs. He has isolated exosomes from bovine milk and demonstrated that test agents can be embedded in these exosomes for oral and nasal delivery for the better management of breast, lung and ovarian cancer. The use of small interfering RNAs (siRNAs) to induce gene silencing has opened a new avenue in drug discovery. Our group is using exosomes for the delivery of siRNAs. 

In the last few years his focus has been to evaluate the effectiveness of berry bioactives and withaferin A against lung and ovarian cancer in cell culture and animal models as well as to identify potential molecular targets. He also has focused on chemopreventive efficacy and mechanisms of whole berry and spice powder and extracts against breast cancer and has developed analytical techniques for tissue and plasma distribution of bioactive principles.

Our group is developing novel combinatorial approaches for the prevention and treatment of lung and ovarian cancer by testing natural agents and standard chemo drugs using drug-sensitive and drug-resistant cancer cells. More recently, his lab has developed the slow release device “polymeric implants” for continuous systemic and local delivery of drugs, a technology which has fetched several national and international patents.

Dr. Aqil has authored or co-authored over 65 articles in peer-reviewed journals and 14 book chapters, and has edited four books. He has participated in many conferences and presented his work in 75 abstracts/oral presentations. He is an associate editor for the International Research Journal of Microbiology and serves as peer reviewer for more than 30 journals.

Literature Cited:

  1. Aqil F, Munagala R, Jeyabalan J, Agrawal AK, Gupta R.  Exosomes for the enhanced bioavailability and efficacy of curcumin.  AAPS [American Assn of Pharmaceutical Sciences] Journal 2017 Nov;19(6):1691-702. PMID: 29047044.
  2. Aqil F, Jeyabalan J, Agrawal AK, Kyakulaga AH, Parker L, Munagala R, Gupta RC.  Exosomal delivery of berry anthocyanidins for the management of ovarian cancer.  Food & Function 2017 Nov 15;15;8(11):4100-7. PMID: 28991298.
  3. Aqil F, Jeyabalan J, Munagala R, Ravoori S, Vadhanam MV, Schultz DJ, Gupta R.  Chemoprevention of rat mammary carcinogenesis by Apiaceae spices.  International Journal of Molecular Science 2017 Feb 16;18(2):E425. PMID: 28212313. PMCID: PMC5343959.
  4. *Sherwood LC, *Aqil F, *Vadhanam MV, Jeyabalan J, Hoetkar D, Srivastava S, O’Toole M, Cambron S, Spencer W, Parker L, Gupta RC.  Development of a goat model for evaluation of withaferin A: Cervical implants for the treatment of cervical intraepithelial neoplasia.  Experimental & Molecular Pathology 2017 Dec;103(3):320-9. (* equal contribution). PMID: 29157955.
  5. *Agrawal AK, *Aqil F,  Jeyabalan J, Spencer WA, Beck J, Gachuki BW, Alhakeem SS, Oben K, Munagala R, Bondada S, Gupta R.  Milk-derived exosomes for oral delivery of paclitaxel. Nanomedicine 2017 Jul;13(5):1627-36. (*equal contribution). PMID: 28300659.
  6. Munagala R, Aqil F, Jeyabalan J, Agrawal AK, Mudd AM, Al-Hassan K, Vadhanam MV, Gupta R.  Exosomal formulation of anthocyanidins against multiple cancer types.  Cancer Letters  2017 May 1;393:94-102. PMID: 28202315. PMCID: PMC5837866.
  7. Husain FM, Ahmad I, Al-Thubiani AS, Abulreesh HH, AlHazza IM, Aqil F.  Leaf extracts of Mangifera indicaL. inhibits quorum sensing-regulated production of virulence factors and biofilm in test bacteria.  Frontiers in Microbiology 2017 Apr 24;24;8:727.  eCollection 2017.  PMID: 28484444. PMCID: PMC5402315.
  8. Aqil F, Gupta RC.  Controlled delivery of chemopreventive agents by polymeric implants. Methods in Molecular Biology 2016;1379:1-11. PMID: 2660285.
  9. *Munagala R, *Aqil F, *Jeyabalan J, Gupta RC.  Bovine milk-derived exosomes for drug delivery. Cancer Letters 2016 Feb 1;371(1):48-61. (* equal contribution). PMID: 26604130. PMCID: PMC4706402.
  10. Munagala R, Aqil F, Gupta RC.  Exosomal miRNAs as biomarkers of recurrent lung cancer. Tumor Biology 2016 Aug;37(8):10703-14.  PMID: 26867772.
  11. Zahin M, Ahmad I, Shireen I, Husain FM, Aqil, F.  Broad spectrum antioxidant properties of 20 Indian medicinal plants.  Journal of Herbs Spices and Medicinal Plants 2016;22:118-29. [ https://doi.org/10.1080/10496475.2015.1057888 ]
  12. Aqil F, Jeyabalan J, Kausar H, Munagala R, Gupta RC.  Lung cancer inhibitory activity of dietary berries and berry polyphenols.  Journal of Berry Research 2016;6(2):105-14.
  13. Aqil F, Jeyabalan J, Munagala R, Singh IP, Gupta RC.  Prevention of hormonal breast cancer by dietary jamun.  Molecular Nutrition and Food Research 2016 Jun;60(6):1470-81. PMID: 27030099. PMCID: PMC4927075,
  14. Zahin M, Ahmad I, Aqil F.  Antioxidant and antimutagenic potential of Psidium guajava.  Drug & Chemical Toxicology 2017 Apr;40(2):146-53. PMID: 27268266.
  15. Aqil F, Kausar H, Agrawal AK, Jeyaprakash J, Munagala R, Gupta RC.  Exosomal formulation enhances therapeutic response of celastrol against lung cancer.  Experimental & Molecular Pathology 2016 Aug;101(1):12-21. PMID: 27235383.
  16. Cao P, Aqil F, Ravoori S, Gupta RC, Vadhanam MV.  Polymeric implants for systemic delivery of green tea polyphenols.  Journal of Pharmaceutical Science 2014 Mar;103(3):945-51. PMID: 24464784.  PMCID: PMC4009679.
  17. Zahin M, Ahmad I, Gupta R, Aqil F.  Punicalagin and ellagic acid demonstrates antimutagenic activity and inhibition of benzo[a]pyrene induced DNA adducts.  Biomedical Research International 2014;2014:467465. PMID: 24949451. PMCID: PMC4052943.
  18. Aqil F, Shen H, Jeyabalan J, Xing X, Lehmler H, Gabriele L, Robertson LW, Gupta RC.  Sustained expression of CYPs and DNA adduct accumulation with continuous exposure to PCB126 and PCB153 through a new delivery method: Polymeric implants.  Toxicology Report 2014 Jan 1;1:820-33. PMID: 25530946. PMCID: PMC4266188.
  19. Munagala R, Aqil F, Jeyabalan J, Vadhanam MV, Gupta RC.  Tanshinone IIA inhibits viral oncogene expression leading to apoptosis and inhibition of cervical cancer.  Cancer Letters 2015 Jan;356(2 Pt B):536-46. PMID: 25304375.
  20. Jeyabalan J, Aqil F. Soper L, Schultz D, Gupta, RC.  Potent chemopreventive/antioxidant activity detected in common spices of the Apiaceae family invitro.  Nutrition & Cancer 2015;67(7):1201-7. PMID: 26381237. PMCID: PMC4684170.

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