Functionalized Carbon Nanotubes for Probing and Modulating Molecular Functions

Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Institut de Biologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire, UPR 9021 Immunologie et Chimie Thérapeutiques, 67000 Strasbourg, France.
Chemistry & biology (Impact Factor: 6.65). 02/2010; 17(2):107-15. DOI: 10.1016/j.chembiol.2010.01.009
Source: PubMed


Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) entered the domain of biological research a few years ago, creating a significant amount of interest due to their extraordinary physicochemical properties. The integration of CNT-based strategies with biology necessitates a multidisciplinary approach that requires competences in the diverse fields of chemistry, physics, and life sciences. In the biomedical domain CNTs are extensively explored as novel drug delivery systems for therapy and diagnosis. Additionally, CNTs can also be designed as new tools for modulation of molecular functions, by directly affecting various biological processes or by interaction with bioactive molecules. The aim of this review is to discuss how CNTs can be exploited as new probes for molecular functions. The different sections illustrate various applications of CNTs, including gene silencing, surface cell interactions via glycoproteins, biosensing, intracellular drug delivery using an atomic force microscopy tip-based nanoinjector, modulation of antibody/antigen interaction and enzyme activity, and blocking of ion channels.

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    • "Therefore, carbon nanotube interfaces present clearly enhanced capacities, e.g., to approach the active sites of a redox enzyme and to wire it to the bulk electrode. Furthermore, their ease and well-documented organic functionalization (Ménard-Moyon et al., 2010) brings new properties to nanostructured electrodes such as specific docking sites for biomolecules or redox mediation of bioelectrochemical reactions. Moreover, CNT films exhibit a high electroactive surface areas due to the natural formation of highly porous three-dimensional networks, suitable for the anchoring of a high amount of bioreceptor units, leading consequently to high sensitivities (Wang, 2005; Le Goff et al., 2011). "
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    ABSTRACT: A biosensor device is defined by its biological, or bioinspired receptor unit with unique specificities toward corresponding analytes. These analytes are often of biological origin like DNAs of bacteria or viruses, or proteins which are generated from the immune system (antibodies, antigens) of infected or contaminated living organisms. Such analytes can also be simple molecules like glucose or pollutants when a biological receptor unit with particular specificity is available. One of many other challenges in biosensor development is the efficient signal capture of the biological recognition event (transduction). Such transducers translate the interaction of the analyte with the biological element into electrochemical, electrochemiluminescent, magnetic, gravimetric, or optical signals. In order to increase sensitivities and to lower detection limits down to even individual molecules, nanomaterials are promising candidates due to the possibility to immobilize an enhanced quantity of bioreceptor units at reduced volumes and even to act itself as transduction element. Among such nanomaterials, gold nanoparticles, semi-conductor quantum dots, polymer nanoparticles, carbon nanotubes, nanodiamonds, and graphene are intensively studied. Due to the vast evolution of this research field, this review summarizes in a non-exhaustive way the advantages of nanomaterials by focusing on nano-objects which provide further beneficial properties than "just" an enhanced surface area.
    Full-text · Article · Aug 2014 · Frontiers in Chemistry
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    • "mechanical, optical, electrical and thermal conductivity, electronic, and high surface area) [2], which combined with a chemically tunable surface (via chemical functionalization or interactions with aromatic or hydrophobic regions of molecules) [3] [4] make them appealing for a wide range of applications [5]. CNTs have been proposed to offer new opportunities in various areas of biological and biomedical research [6], such as biosensors [7], substrates for cell growth [8], photodynamic therapy [9] [10], molecular imaging [11] [12], optical imaging [13] [14], ultrasound contrast agents [15] and delivery systems (for vaccines, genes or drugs) [16] [17]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Carbon nanotubes may enter into the bloodstream and interact with blood components indirectly via translocation following unintended exposure or directly after an intended administration for biomedical purposes. Once introduced into systemic circulation, nanotubes will encounter various proteins, biomolecules or cells which have specific roles in the homeostasis of the circulatory system. It is therefore essential to determine whether those interactions will lead to adverse effects or not. Advances in the understanding of how carbon nanotubes interact with blood proteins, the complement system, red blood cells and the hemostatic system are reviewed in this article. While many studies on carbon nanotube health risk assessment and their biomedical applications have appeared in the last few years, reports on the hemocompatibility of these nanomaterials remain surprisingly limited. Yet, defining the hemotoxicological profile is a mandatory step toward the development of clinically-relevant medications or contrast agents based on carbon nanotubes.
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    • "Because of their light weight and strong mechanical properties, graphite and C/C composites have been studied for their use as artificial bone and teeth since the 1980s1. Since the discovery of carbon nanomaterials (CNMs) such as fullerenes23, carbon nanotubes (CNTs)4567, and carbon nanohorns8, CNMs and their organic/inorganic hybrid materials have been considered for medical applications, for example, as carriers91011 for drug delivery systems, cell growth scaffolds121314, medical hyperthermia agents151617, fluorescence imaging agents1819, and ultrasound contrast agents20. For such applications, CNMs are injected or implanted into the body after being modified with functional groups or coated with a bioinert polymer, such as a polypeptide, polysaccharide, or polyethylene glycol. "
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    ABSTRACT: Because of their mechanical strength, chemical stability, and low molecular weight, carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are attractive biological implant materials. Biomaterials are typically implanted into subcutaneous tissue or bone; however, the long-term biopersistence of CNTs in these tissues is unknown. Here, tangled oxidized multi-walled CNTs (t-ox-MWCNTs) were implanted into rat subcutaneous tissues and structural changes in the t-ox-MWCNTs located inside and outside of macrophages were studied for 2 years post-implantation. The majority of the large agglomerates were present in the intercellular space, maintained a layered structure, and did not undergo degradation. By contrast, small agglomerates were found inside macrophages, where they were gradually degraded in lysosomes. None of the rats displayed symptoms of cancer or severe inflammatory reactions such as necrosis. These results indicate that t-ox-MWCNTs have high biopersistence and do not evoke adverse events in rat subcutaneous tissue in vivo, demonstrating their potential utility as implantable biomaterials.
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