Special Issue "Optical Nanomaterials for Diagnosis and Therapy"

A special issue of Nanomaterials (ISSN 2079-4991). This special issue belongs to the section "Biology and Medicines".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 November 2020.

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Run Zhang
Website SciProfiles
Guest Editor
Australian Institute for Bioengineering and Nanotechnology, AIBN, The University of Queensland, St Lucia, QLD 4072, Australia
Interests: biosensors; bionanoprobes; chemosensors; bioimaging; theranostic nanomaterials; bio-/nano-interface
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Cutting-edge biomedicine has a particular emphasis on the development of novel nanomaterials for disease diagnosis, treatment, and monitoring treatment response of diseases. Among various materials, optical nanomaterials with unique fluorescence or luminescence emissions have attracted considerable attention in recent years. The developed optical nanomaterials can be easily used for the detection and visualization of important biomarkers inside the body, and, thus, benefit the diagnosis of various diseases. Optical nanomaterials designed at the nanoscale level have also contributed significantly to disease treatment, such as cancer therapy, by delivering drugs, genes, small molecules, and proteins to specific diseased lesions. Based on their superiority in photochemistry and photophysics, treatment can be monitored in real-time by recording the evolutions of optical photons.

This Special Issue aims to provide a forum for communication among scientists in the fields of nanomaterials science, photochemistry-photophysics-photobiology, nanobiophotonics, and nano-theranostics. Fluorescence, phosphorescence, bioluminescence, and electrochemical luminescence techniques will be discussed in this Special Issue. The development of next-generation optical nanomaterials, such as polymer, metal–organic frameworks and inorganic nanoparticles are within the scope. Studies on the cutting-edge nanomaterial preparations, innovative methodologies on surface chemistry, unique mechanisms of the nano-bio interface, and relevant diagnostic and therapeutic applications will also be included. The applications of optical materials in various research areas, such as biosensing, bioimaging, drug/gene/protein delivery, phototherapy, etc., will be further discussed.

Dr. Run Zhang
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

  • Optical materials
  • Luminescence
  • Nanomedicine
  • Drug Delivery
  • Phototherapy
  • Nano-bio-interface

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle
Bone Morphogenetic Protein-2 Conjugated to Quantum Dot®s is Biologically Functional
Nanomaterials 2020, 10(6), 1208; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10061208 - 20 Jun 2020
Cited by 2
Abstract
Quantum Dot®s (QDot®s) are novel, semi-conductive nanostructures that emit a certain fluorescence when excited by specific wavelengths. QDot®s are more photostable, brighter, and photobleach less than other fluorescent dyes. These characteristics give them the potential to be [...] Read more.
Quantum Dot®s (QDot®s) are novel, semi-conductive nanostructures that emit a certain fluorescence when excited by specific wavelengths. QDot®s are more photostable, brighter, and photobleach less than other fluorescent dyes. These characteristics give them the potential to be used in many biological applications. The shells of QDot®s are coated with functional groups, such as carboxylate and organic groups, allowing them to couple to peptides/proteins and be used for real-time imaging and high-resolution microscopy. Here, we utilize Quantum Dot®s and Bone Morphogenetic Protein-2 (BMP-2) to create a BMP-2-QDot®s conjugate. BMP-2 is a growth factor that drives many processes such as cardiogenesis, neural growth, and osteogenesis. Despite its numerous roles, the trafficking and uptake of BMP-2 into cells is not well-established, especially during progression of diseases. The results presented here demonstrate for the first time a fluorescent BMP-2 analog that binds to the BMP-receptors (BMPRs), remains biologically active, and is stable for long time periods. Previous attempts to develop a biological BMP-2 analog with Fluorescein isothiocyanate (FITC) or nanodiamonds lacked data on the analog’s stability. Furthermore, these analogs did not address whether they can signal within the cell by binding to the BMPRs or were mediated by non-stable conjugates. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optical Nanomaterials for Diagnosis and Therapy)
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Open AccessArticle
Biocompatibility and Bioimaging Potential of Fruit-Based Carbon Dots
Nanomaterials 2019, 9(2), 199; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9020199 - 03 Feb 2019
Cited by 5
Abstract
Photo-luminescent carbon dots (CD) have become promising nanomaterials and their synthesis from natural products has attracted attention by the possibility of making the most of affordable, sustainable and, readily-available carbon sources. Here, we report on the synthesis, characterization and bioimaging potential of CDs [...] Read more.
Photo-luminescent carbon dots (CD) have become promising nanomaterials and their synthesis from natural products has attracted attention by the possibility of making the most of affordable, sustainable and, readily-available carbon sources. Here, we report on the synthesis, characterization and bioimaging potential of CDs produced from diverse extensively produced fruits: kiwi, avocado and pear. The in vitro cytotoxicity and anticancer potential of those CDs were assessed by comparing human epithelial cells from normal adult kidney and colorectal adenocarcinoma cells. In vivo toxicity was evaluated using zebrafish embryos given their peculiar embryogenesis, with transparent embryos developing ex-utero, allowing a real-time analysis. In vitro and in vivo experiments revealed that the synthesized CD presented toxicity only at concentrations of ≥1.5 mg mL−1. Kiwi CD exhibited the highest toxicity to both cells lines and zebrafish embryos, presenting lower LD50 values. Interestingly, despite inducing lower cytotoxicity in normal cells than the other CDs, black pepper CDs resulted in higher toxicity in vivo. The bio-distribution of CD in zebrafish embryos upon uptake was investigated using fluorescence microscopy. We observed a higher accumulation of CD in the eye and yolk sac, avocado CD being the ones more retained, indicating their potential usefulness in bio-imaging applications. This study shows the action of fruit-based CDs from kiwi, avocado and pear. However the compounds present in these fruit-based CDs and their mechanism of action as a bioimaging agent need to be further explored. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optical Nanomaterials for Diagnosis and Therapy)
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Open AccessArticle
Enhanced Peroxidase-Like Activity of MoS2 Quantum Dots Functionalized g-C3N4 Nanosheets towards Colorimetric Detection of H2O2
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(12), 976; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8120976 - 26 Nov 2018
Cited by 7
Abstract
MoS2 quantum dots (QDs) functionalized g-C3N4 nanosheets (MoS2@CNNS) were prepared through a protonation-assisted ion exchange method, which were developed as a highly efficient biomimetic catalyst. Structural analysis revealed that uniformly-dispersed MoS2 QDs with controllable size and [...] Read more.
MoS2 quantum dots (QDs) functionalized g-C3N4 nanosheets (MoS2@CNNS) were prepared through a protonation-assisted ion exchange method, which were developed as a highly efficient biomimetic catalyst. Structural analysis revealed that uniformly-dispersed MoS2 QDs with controllable size and different loading amount grew in-situ on the surface of CNNS, forming close-contact MoS2@CNNS nanostructures and exhibiting distinct surface properties. Compared to MoS2 QDs and CNNS, the MoS2@CNNS nanocomposites exhibited a more than four times stronger peroxidase-like catalytic activity, which could catalyze the oxidation of 3,3’,5,5’-tetramethylbenzidine (TMB) in the presence of H2O2 to generate a blue oxide. Among the MoS2@CNNS nanocomposites, MoS2@CNNS(30) was verified to present the best intrinsic peroxidase-like performance, which could be attributed to the more negative potential and larger specific surface area. A simple, rapid and ultrasensitive system for colorimetric detection of H2O2 was thus successfully established based on MoS2@CNNS, displaying nice selectivity, reusability, and stability. The detection limit of H2O2 could reach as low as 0.02 μM. Furthermore, the kinetic and active species trapping experiments indicated the peroxidase-like catalytic mechanism of MoS2@CNNS. This work develops a novel, rapid, and ultrasensitive approach for visual assay of H2O2, which has a potential application prospect on clinical diagnosis and biomedical analysis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optical Nanomaterials for Diagnosis and Therapy)
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Open AccessArticle
Highly Photoluminescent and Stable N-Doped Carbon Dots as Nanoprobes for Hg2+ Detection
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(11), 900; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8110900 - 02 Nov 2018
Cited by 18
Abstract
We developed a microreactor with porous copper fibers for synthesizing nitrogen-doped carbon dots (N-CDs) with a high stability and photoluminescence (PL) quantum yield (QY). By optimizing synthesis conditions, including the reaction temperature, flow rate, ethylenediamine dosage, and porosity of copper fibers, the N-CDs [...] Read more.
We developed a microreactor with porous copper fibers for synthesizing nitrogen-doped carbon dots (N-CDs) with a high stability and photoluminescence (PL) quantum yield (QY). By optimizing synthesis conditions, including the reaction temperature, flow rate, ethylenediamine dosage, and porosity of copper fibers, the N-CDs with a high PL QY of 73% were achieved. The PL QY of N-CDs was two times higher with copper fibers than without. The interrelations between the copper fibers with different porosities and the N-CDs were investigated using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and Fourier Transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). The results demonstrate that the elemental contents and surface functional groups of N-CDs are significantly influenced by the porosity of copper fibers. The N-CDs can be used to effectively and selectively detect Hg2+ ions with a good linear response in the 0~50 μM Hg2+ ions concentration range, and the lowest limit of detection (LOD) is 2.54 nM, suggesting that the N-CDs have great potential for applications in the fields of environmental and hazard detection. Further studies reveal that the different d orbital energy levels of Hg2+ compared to those of other metal ions can affect the efficiency of electron transfer and thereby result in their different response in fluorescence quenching towards N-CDs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optical Nanomaterials for Diagnosis and Therapy)
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Review

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Open AccessReview
Developing Protein-Based Nanoparticles as Versatile Delivery Systems for Cancer Therapy and Imaging
Nanomaterials 2019, 9(9), 1329; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9091329 - 16 Sep 2019
Cited by 5
Abstract
In recent years, it has become apparent that cancer nanomedicine’s reliance on synthetic nanoparticles as drug delivery systems has resulted in limited clinical outcomes. This is mostly due to a poor understanding of their “bio–nano” interactions. Protein-based nanoparticles (PNPs) are rapidly emerging as [...] Read more.
In recent years, it has become apparent that cancer nanomedicine’s reliance on synthetic nanoparticles as drug delivery systems has resulted in limited clinical outcomes. This is mostly due to a poor understanding of their “bio–nano” interactions. Protein-based nanoparticles (PNPs) are rapidly emerging as versatile vehicles for the delivery of therapeutic and diagnostic agents, offering a potential alternative to synthetic nanoparticles. PNPs are abundant in nature, genetically and chemically modifiable, monodisperse, biocompatible, and biodegradable. To harness their full clinical potential, it is important for PNPs to be accurately designed and engineered. In this review, we outline the recent advancements and applications of PNPs in cancer nanomedicine. We also discuss the future directions for PNP research and what challenges must be overcome to ensure their translation into the clinic. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optical Nanomaterials for Diagnosis and Therapy)
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