Special Issue "Nanoscience and Health: Tiny Technology Raises Big Questions"

A special issue of Nanomaterials (ISSN 2079-4991).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 June 2019).

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Eun-Kyung Lim
Website
Guest Editor
BioNano technology Research Center, Korea Research Institute of Bioscience and Biotechnology, 125 Gwahak-ro, Yuseong-gu, Daejeon, 34141, Korea
Interests: drug delivery; multifunctional nanocomposite; cancer imaging; nano-bio materials; nanomaterials; nano-bio probe; nano-bio sensor

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Nanoparticles have been explored for their potential use in cancer diagnosis and therapy due to their unique properties. In addition, nanoparticles have provided significant progress in cancer theranostics, in which both diagnosis and therapeutic functions can be achieved simultaneously. In the early stage of theranostics, imaging agents and therapeutic agents were simply carried in nanoparticles. However, theranostics has advanced in recent years with the aim of monitoring treatment subjects to increase drug efficacy and safety based on an oncology understanding of the overall healthcare system, as well as to eliminate the unnecessary treatment of patients.

The aim of this Special Issue (“Nanoscience and Health: Tiny Technology Raises Big Questions”) is to highlight advances in the development of a nanotechnology-based healthcare system that can be applied to the treatment and diagnosis of various diseases such as cancer, as well as infectious and genetic diseases, through an overall understanding of disease. Our Special Issue invites the submission of full size articles, short communications, case reports, and reviews.

We would be delighted if you could contribute to this Special Issue.

Dr. Eun-Kyung Lim
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Nanomaterials is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • nanomaterials
  • nanoparticles
  • nanocarriers
  • nanomedicine
  • diagnosis and therapy
  • theranostics (theragnosis)

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle
Nanoparticle Deposition in Rhythmically Moving Acinar Models with Interalveolar Septal Apertures
Nanomaterials 2019, 9(8), 1126; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9081126 - 04 Aug 2019
Cited by 3
Abstract
Pulmonary delivery of nanomedicines has been extensively studied in recent years because of their enhanced biocompatibility, sustained-release properties, and surface modification capability. The lung as a target also offers many advantages over other routers, such as large surface area, noninvasive, quick therapeutic onset, [...] Read more.
Pulmonary delivery of nanomedicines has been extensively studied in recent years because of their enhanced biocompatibility, sustained-release properties, and surface modification capability. The lung as a target also offers many advantages over other routers, such as large surface area, noninvasive, quick therapeutic onset, and avoiding first-pass metabolism. However, nanoparticles smaller than 0.26 µm typically escape phagocytosis and remain in the alveoli for a long time, leading to particle accumulation and invoking tissue responses. It is imperative to understand the behavior and fates of inhaled nanoparticles in the alveoli to reliably assess therapeutic outcomes of nanomedicines or health risk of environmental toxins. The objective of this study is to numerically investigate nanoparticle deposition in a duct-alveolar model with varying sizes of inter-alveolar septal apertures (pores). A discrete phase Lagrangian model was implemented to track nanoparticle trajectories under the influence of rhythmic wall expansion and contraction. Both temporal and spatial dosimetry in the alveoli were computed. Wall motions are essential for nanoparticles to penetrate the acinar region and deposit in the alveoli. The level of aerosol irreversibility (i.e., mixing of inhaled nanoparticles with residual air in the alveolar airspace) is determined by the particle diffusivity, which in turn, dictates the fraction of particles being exhaled out. When deposition in the upper airways was not considered, high alveolar deposition rates (74–95%) were predicted for all nanoparticles considered (1–1000 nm), which were released into the alveoli at the beginning of the inhalation. The pore size notably affects the deposition pattern of inhaled nanoparticles but exerts a low impact upon the total deposition fractions. This finding indicates that consistent pulmonary doses of nanomedicine are possible in emphysema patients if breathing maneuver with the same tidal volume can be performed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanoscience and Health: Tiny Technology Raises Big Questions)
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Open AccessArticle
Detection of Ampicillin-Resistant E. coli Using Novel Nanoprobe-Combined Fluorescence In Situ Hybridization
Nanomaterials 2019, 9(5), 750; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9050750 - 16 May 2019
Abstract
Antibiotic-resistant bacteria present a global threat because the infections they cause are difficult to treat. Therefore, it is highly important to develop advanced methods for the identification of antibiotic resistance gene in the virulent bacteria. Here, we report the development of novel nanoprobes [...] Read more.
Antibiotic-resistant bacteria present a global threat because the infections they cause are difficult to treat. Therefore, it is highly important to develop advanced methods for the identification of antibiotic resistance gene in the virulent bacteria. Here, we report the development of novel nanoprobes for fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) and the application of the nanoprobe to the detection of ampicillin-resistant Escherichia coli. The nanoprobe for FISH was synthesized by the modified sol–gel chemistry and the synthesized nanoprobe provided strong fluorescent signals and pH stability even under natural light condition. For the double-identification of bacteria species and ampicillin-resistance with a single probe in situ, the nanoprobes were conjugated to the two kinds of biotinylated probe DNAs; one for E. coli-species specific gene and the other for a drug-resistant gene. By using the nanoprobe-DNA conjugants, we successfully detected the ampicillin-resistant E. coli through the FISH technique. This result suggests the new insight into light stable FISH application of the nanoprobe for a pathogenic antibiotic-resistance bacterium. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanoscience and Health: Tiny Technology Raises Big Questions)
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Open AccessArticle
PEGylated Magnetic Nano-Assemblies as Contrast Agents for Effective T2-Weighted MR Imaging
Nanomaterials 2019, 9(3), 410; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9030410 - 11 Mar 2019
Cited by 2
Abstract
We designed a high-sensitivity magnetic resonance imaging contrast agent that could be used to diagnose diseases. First, magnetic nanocrystals were synthesized by a thermal decomposition method on an organic solvent to obtain a high magnetism and methoxy poly(ethylene glycol)-poly(lactic acid) as an amphiphilic [...] Read more.
We designed a high-sensitivity magnetic resonance imaging contrast agent that could be used to diagnose diseases. First, magnetic nanocrystals were synthesized by a thermal decomposition method on an organic solvent to obtain a high magnetism and methoxy poly(ethylene glycol)-poly(lactic acid) as an amphiphilic polymer using the ring-opening polymerization method to stably disperse the magnetic nanocrystals in an aqueous phase. Subsequently, the magnetic nanoclusters simultaneously self-assembled with methoxy poly(ethylene glycol)-poly(lactic acid) using the nano-emulsion method to form magnetic nanoclusters. Because their shape was similar to a raspberry, they were named PEGylated magnetic nano-assemblies. The PEGylated magnetic nano-assemblies were dispersed stably in the aqueous phase with a uniform size of approximately 65–70 nm for an extended period (0 days: 68.8 ± 5.1 nm, 33 days: 69.2 ± 2.0 nm, and 44 days: 63.2 ± 5.6). They exhibited both enough of a magnetic resonance (MR) contrast effect and biocompatibility. In an in vivo study, the PEGylated magnetic nano-assemblies provided a high contrast effect for magnetic resonance images for a long time after one treatment, thereby improving the diagnostic visibility of the disease site. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanoscience and Health: Tiny Technology Raises Big Questions)
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Open AccessArticle
Effect of Acidity Levels and Feed Rate on the Porosity of Aerogel Extracted from Rice Husk under Ambient Pressure
Nanomaterials 2019, 9(2), 300; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9020300 - 20 Feb 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
Silica aerogels have attracted tremendous interest due to their high specific surface area and the physical, chemical, and mechanical properties as promising materials for thermal insulation, chemical sensors, and energy storage devices. However, large-scale production of silica aerogels remains a challenge due to [...] Read more.
Silica aerogels have attracted tremendous interest due to their high specific surface area and the physical, chemical, and mechanical properties as promising materials for thermal insulation, chemical sensors, and energy storage devices. However, large-scale production of silica aerogels remains a challenge due to costly alkoxide precursors and energy-intensive supercritical drying processes. This paper analyzes the effect of acidity levels and feed rate on the porosity of rice husk aerogels with high specific surface area under ambient pressure. This synthetic approach is cost-effective, eco-friendly, and facilitates recycling. Rice husk ash, which consists of 92% amorphous pure silica, was produced by combustion. A process of solvent exchange and surface modification under ambient pressure at different pH levels was conducted for synthesis of the aerogel. The specific surface area of rice husk aerogel was confirmed as ranging from 385 to 861 m2/g under pH 1 to pH 9 and acid feed rate of 0.5 to 5.0 mL/min. The optimized aerogel had a specific surface area of 861 m2/g, a pore volume of 3.33 cm3/g, and an average pore diameter of 12 nm when synthesized at pH 1 and an acid feed rate of 2.5 mL/min. The aerogel was found to be highly hydrophobic, with a water contact angle of 156° up to about 340 °C. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanoscience and Health: Tiny Technology Raises Big Questions)
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Open AccessArticle
Polydopamine/Transferrin Hybrid Nanoparticles for Targeted Cell-Killing
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(12), 1065; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8121065 - 17 Dec 2018
Cited by 6
Abstract
Polydopamine can form biocompatible particles that convert light into heat. Recently, a protocol has been optimized to synthesize polydopamine/protein hybrid nanoparticles that retain the biological function of proteins, and combine it with the stimuli-induced heat generation of polydopamine. We have utilized this novel [...] Read more.
Polydopamine can form biocompatible particles that convert light into heat. Recently, a protocol has been optimized to synthesize polydopamine/protein hybrid nanoparticles that retain the biological function of proteins, and combine it with the stimuli-induced heat generation of polydopamine. We have utilized this novel system to form polydopamine particles, containing transferrin (PDA/Tf). Mouse melanoma cells, which strongly express the transferrin receptor, were exposed to PDA/Tf nanoparticles (NPs) and, subsequently, were irradiated with a UV laser. The cell death rate was monitored in real-time. When irradiated, the melanoma cells exposed to PDA/Tf NPs underwent apoptosis, faster than the control cells, pointing towards the ability of PDA/Tf to mediate UV-light-induced cell death. The system was also validated in an organotypic, 3D-printed tumor spheroid model, comprising mouse melanoma cells, and the exposure and subsequent irradiation with UV-light, yielded similar results to the 2D cell culture. The process of apoptosis was found to be targeted and mediated by the lysosomal membrane permeabilization. Therefore, the herein presented polydopamine/protein NPs constitute a versatile and stable system for cancer cell-targeting and photothermal apoptosis induction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanoscience and Health: Tiny Technology Raises Big Questions)
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Review

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Open AccessReview
Evolution of Wearable Devices with Real-Time Disease Monitoring for Personalized Healthcare
Nanomaterials 2019, 9(6), 813; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9060813 - 29 May 2019
Cited by 17
Abstract
Wearable devices are becoming widespread in a wide range of applications, from healthcare to biomedical monitoring systems, which enable continuous measurement of critical biomarkers for medical diagnostics, physiological health monitoring and evaluation. Especially as the elderly population grows globally, various chronic and acute [...] Read more.
Wearable devices are becoming widespread in a wide range of applications, from healthcare to biomedical monitoring systems, which enable continuous measurement of critical biomarkers for medical diagnostics, physiological health monitoring and evaluation. Especially as the elderly population grows globally, various chronic and acute diseases become increasingly important, and the medical industry is changing dramatically due to the need for point-of-care (POC) diagnosis and real-time monitoring of long-term health conditions. Wearable devices have evolved gradually in the form of accessories, integrated clothing, body attachments and body inserts. Over the past few decades, the tremendous development of electronics, biocompatible materials and nanomaterials has resulted in the development of implantable devices that enable the diagnosis and prognosis through small sensors and biomedical devices, and greatly improve the quality and efficacy of medical services. This article summarizes the wearable devices that have been developed to date, and provides a review of their clinical applications. We will also discuss the technical barriers and challenges in the development of wearable devices, and discuss future prospects on wearable biosensors for prevention, personalized medicine and real-time health monitoring. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanoscience and Health: Tiny Technology Raises Big Questions)
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