Zdravka Medarova, PhD, is an Associate Professor of Radiology at Harvard Medical School. She is a geneticist/cancer biologist by training and has an extensive background in molecular biology, genetics, and tumor biology and therapy. The focus of her research has been the development and testing of multi-functional imaging/delivery vehicles for combined cancer imaging and therapy. Dr. Medarova’s earliest work described, for the first time, the design and application of ultrasmall iron oxide nanoparticles as imaging-capable carriers of siRNA to tumors. This work generated substantial interest in the research community, since it illustrated the value of these nanoparticles for the delivery of small RNA therapy to challenging organ targets and also described an approach for the noninvasive monitoring of small RNA delivery. More recently, her lab developed magnetic nanoparticles as delivery vehicles of miRNA-targeted therapy to metastases. This work resulted in multiple publications in high-impact journals such as Cancer Research, Nature Medicine, Oncogene, and Scientific Reports, as well as grants from private foundations and the NIH.

Dr. Medarova obtained a BA degree in pre-medicine from the University of Southern Maine (1998) and a PhD in Genetics from the University of New Hampshire (2002).


PhD in Genetics, University of New Hampshire

Select Publications

1. Yigit MV, Ghosh SK, Kumar M, Petkova V, Kavishwar A, Moore A, Medarova Z. Context-dependent differences in miR-10b breast oncogenesis can be targeted for the prevention and arrest of lymph node metastasis. Oncogene. 2013 Mar 21;32(12):1530-8.

2. Yoo B, Kavishwar A, Ross A, Wang P, Tabassum DP, Polyak K, Barteneva N, Petkova V, Pantazopoulos P, Tena A, Moore A, Medarova Z. Combining miR-10b-Targeted Nanotherapy with Low-Dose Doxorubicin Elicits Durable Regressions of Metastatic Breast Cancer. Cancer Res. 2015 Oct 15;75(20):4407-15.

3. Yoo B, Kavishwar A, Wang P, Ross A, Pantazopoulos P, Dudley M, Moore A, Medarova Z. Therapy targeted to the metastatic niche is effective in a model of stage IV breast cancer. Sci Rep. 2017 Mar 21;7:45060.


Anna V. Moore, Zdravka Medarova. miRNA profiling compositions and methods of use. USPTO: 10086093. October 2, 2018.

Zdravka Medarova, Mehmet V. Yigit, Anna Moore. Therapeutic nanoparticles and methods of use thereof. USPTO: 9763891 and 9629812. September 19, 2017 and April 25, 2017.

Stephen J. Lippard, Xiao-an Zhang, Zdravka Medarova, Anna Moore. Methods for mobile zinc measurement. USPTO: 8574914. November 5, 2013.