Viruses are among the most infectious pathogens, responsible for the highest death toll around the world. Lack of effective clinical drugs for most viral diseases emphasizes the need for speedy and accurate diagnosis at early stages of infection to prevent rapid spread of the pathogens. Glycans are important molecules which are involved in different biological recognition processes, especially in the spread of infection by mediating virus interaction with endothelial cells. Thus, novel strategies based on nanotechnology have been developed for identifying and inhibiting viruses in a fast, selective, and precise way. The nanosized nature of nanomaterials and their exclusive optical, electronic, magnetic, and mechanical features can improve patient care through using sensors with minimal invasiveness and extreme sensitivity. This review provides an overview of the latest advances of functionalized glyconanomaterials, for rapid and selective biosensing detection of molecules as biomarkers or specific glycoproteins and as novel promising antiviral agents for different kinds of serious viruses, such as the Dengue virus, Ebola virus, influenza virus, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), influenza virus, Zika virus, or coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19).
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