Fullerene C-60 as a multifunctional system for drug and gene delivery

Center of Excellence for Nanostructured Materials (CENMAT), Department of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Sciences, and INSTM, Unit of Trieste University of Trieste, Piazzale Europa 1, 34127 Trieste, Italy.
Nanoscale (Impact Factor: 6.74). 09/2011; 3(10):4035-41. DOI: 10.1039/c1nr10783f
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The fullerene family, and especially C(60), has delighted the scientific community during the last 25 years with perspective applications in a wide variety of fields, including the biological and the biomedical domains. Several biomedical uses have been explored using water-soluble C(60)-derivatives. However, the employment of fullerenes for drug delivery is still at an early stage of development. The design and synthesis of multifunctionalized and multimodal C(60) systems able to cross the cell membranes and efficiently deliver active molecules is an attracting challenge that involves multidisciplinary strategies. Promising results have emerged in the last years, bringing fullerenes again to the front of interest. Herein, the state of the art of this emerging field is presented and illustrated with some of the most representative examples.

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