In tissue engineering and regenerative medicine, monitoring the status of stem cell differentiation is crucial to verify therapeutic efficacy and optimize treatment procedures. However, traditional methods, such as cell staining and sorting, are labor-intensive and may damage the cells. Therefore, the development of noninvasive methods to monitor the differentiation status in situ is highly desirable and can be of great benefit to stem cell-based therapies. Toward this end, nanotechnology has been applied to develop highly-sensitive biosensors to noninvasively monitor the neural differentiation of stem cells. Herein, this article reviews the development of noninvasive nano-biosensor systems to monitor the neural differentiation of stem cells, mainly focusing on optical (plasmonic) and eletrochemical methods. The findings in this review suggest that novel nano-biosensors capable of monitoring stem cell differentiation are a promising type of technology that can accelerate the development of stem cell therapies, including regenerative medicine.
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