Special Issue "ZnO Nanostructures for Tissue Regeneration, Drug-Delivery and Theranostics Applications"

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

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (1 January 2019).

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Valentina Cauda
Website
Guest Editor
Department of Applied Science & Technology, Politecnico di Torino, Corso Duca degli Abruzzi 24, Torino 10129, Italy
Interests: Drug delivery system; core–shell structures; nanostructured drug carrier; stimuli-responsive drug delivery; theranostics; sonodynamic therapy; multifunctional nanoparticles; metal oxides nanostructures
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Dr. Marco Laurenti
Website
Guest Editor
Applied Science and Technology Department, Politecnico di Torino – C.so Duca degli Abruzzi 24, 10129 Turin, Italy
Interests: zinc oxide; thin films and nanostructures; piezoelectric materials; tissue engineering
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Zinc oxide nanostructures are capturing a great deal of interest thanks to their outstanding and multifunctional properties, coupled with the existence of a huge amount of nano-morphologies (such as nanowires, nanorods, nanoparticles, and nanoflowers), as well as their easy preparation. These aspects fostered a deep investigation of ZnO nanomaterials and related properties, to design and fabricate smart biocompatible nanotools, which have been successfully applied to a wide plethora of applications, ranging from energy harvesting systems and photocatalysis, to the biomedical field. In such particular case, ZnO nanostructures alone or combined into hybrid or composite systems represented a powerful tool for the fabrication of new scaffolds for tissue regeneration with improved antimicrobial properties, as well as for drug-delivery applications. Moreover, the promising optical and biocompatible properties of ZnO have been successfully combined together, resulting into the co-presence of imaging and therapeutic actions. This aims at designing novel nanosystems for theranostic applications in particular for cancer therapy. 

This Special Issue of Nanomaterials is dedicated to the most recent advances in the use of ZnO nanostructures for designing novel “smart” biomedical systems applied to tissue engineering, drug-delivery and theranostics. Participation with research papers and reviews, focused on these topics and ranging from the synthesis and characterization of the raw materials, up to their final in-vitro and in-vivo applications, is highly encouraged.

Prof. Dr. Valentina Cauda
Dr. Marco Laurenti
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • zinc oxide

  • nanostructures

  • tissue engineering

  • antibacterial properties

  • theranostics

  • drug-delivery

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle
Nanostructured ZnO as Multifunctional Carrier for a Green Antibacterial Drug Delivery System—A Feasibility Study
Nanomaterials 2019, 9(3), 407; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9030407 - 11 Mar 2019
Cited by 7
Abstract
The physico–chemical and biological properties of nanostructured ZnO are combined with the non-toxic and eco-friendly features of the scCO2-mediated drug loading technique to develop a multifunctional antimicrobial drug delivery system for potential applications in wound healing. Two nanostructured ZnO (NsZnO) with [...] Read more.
The physico–chemical and biological properties of nanostructured ZnO are combined with the non-toxic and eco-friendly features of the scCO2-mediated drug loading technique to develop a multifunctional antimicrobial drug delivery system for potential applications in wound healing. Two nanostructured ZnO (NsZnO) with different morphologies were prepared through wet organic-solvent-free processes and characterized by means of powder X-ray diffraction, field emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM), and nitrogen adsorption analysis. The antimicrobial activity of the two samples against different microbial strains was investigated together with the in vitro Zn2+ release. The results indicated that the two ZnO nanostructures exhibited the following activity: S. aureus > C. albicans > K. pneumoniae. A correlation between the antimicrobial activity, the physico–chemical properties (specific surface area and crystal size) and the Zn2+ ion release was found. Ibuprofen was, for the first time, loaded on the NsZnO carriers with a supercritical CO2-mediated drug impregnation process and in vitro dissolution studies of the loaded drug were performed. A successful loading up to 14% w/w of ibuprofen in its amorphous form was obtained. A preliminary drug release test showed that up to 68% of the loaded ibuprofen could be delivered to a biological medium, confirming the feasibility of using NsZnO as a multifunctional antimicrobial drug carrier. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
A Microwave-Assisted Synthesis of Zinc Oxide Nanocrystals Finely Tuned for Biological Applications
Nanomaterials 2019, 9(2), 212; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9020212 - 06 Feb 2019
Cited by 8
Abstract
Herein we report a novel, easy, fast and reliable microwave-assisted synthesis procedure for the preparation of colloidal zinc oxide nanocrystals (ZnO NCs) optimized for biological applications. ZnO NCs are also prepared by a conventional solvo-thermal approach and the properties of the two families [...] Read more.
Herein we report a novel, easy, fast and reliable microwave-assisted synthesis procedure for the preparation of colloidal zinc oxide nanocrystals (ZnO NCs) optimized for biological applications. ZnO NCs are also prepared by a conventional solvo-thermal approach and the properties of the two families of NCs are compared and discussed. All of the NCs are fully characterized in terms of morphological analysis, crystalline structure, chemical composition and optical properties, both as pristine nanomaterials or after amino-propyl group functionalization. Compared to the conventional approach, the novel microwave-derived ZnO NCs demonstrate outstanding colloidal stability in ethanol and water with long shelf-life. Furthermore, together with their more uniform size, shape and chemical surface properties, this long-term colloidal stability also contributes to the highly reproducible data in terms of biocompatibility. Actually, a significantly different biological behavior of the microwave-synthesized ZnO NCs is reported with respect to NCs prepared by the conventional synthesis procedure. In particular, consistent cytotoxicity and highly reproducible cell uptake toward KB cancer cells are measured with the use of microwave-synthesized ZnO NCs, in contrast to the non-reproducible and scattered data obtained with the conventionally-synthesized ones. Thus, we demonstrate how the synthetic route and, as a consequence, the control over all the nanomaterial properties are prominent points to be considered when dealing with the biological world for the achievement of reproducible and reliable results, and how the use of commercially-available and under-characterized nanomaterials should be discouraged in this view. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Osteogenic Effect of ZnO-Mesoporous Glasses Loaded with Osteostatin
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(8), 592; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8080592 - 04 Aug 2018
Cited by 6
Abstract
Mesoporous Bioactive Glasses (MBGs) are a family of bioceramics widely investigated for their putative clinical use as scaffolds for bone regeneration. Their outstanding textural properties allow for high bioactivity when compared with other bioactive materials. Moreover, their great pore volumes allow these glasses [...] Read more.
Mesoporous Bioactive Glasses (MBGs) are a family of bioceramics widely investigated for their putative clinical use as scaffolds for bone regeneration. Their outstanding textural properties allow for high bioactivity when compared with other bioactive materials. Moreover, their great pore volumes allow these glasses to be loaded with a wide range of biomolecules to stimulate new bone formation. In this study, an MBG with a composition, in mol%, of 80% SiO2–15% CaO–5% P2O5 (Blank, BL) was compared with two analogous glasses containing 4% and 5% of ZnO (4ZN and 5ZN) before and after impregnation with osteostatin, a C-terminal peptide from a parathyroid hormone-related protein (PTHrP107-111). Zn2+ ions were included in the glass for their bone growth stimulator properties, whereas osteostatin was added for its osteogenic properties. Glasses were characterized, and their cytocompatibility investigated, in pre-osteoblastic MC3T3-E1 cell cultures. The simultaneous additions of osteostatin and Zn2+ ions provoked enhanced MC3T3-E1 cell viability and a higher differentiation capacity, compared with either raw BL or MBGs supplemented only with osteostatin or Zn2+. These in vitro results show that osteostatin enhances the osteogenic effect of Zn2+-enriched glasses, suggesting the potential of this combined approach in bone tissue engineering applications. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Mechanical and Physicochemical Properties of Newly Formed ZnO-PMMA Nanocomposites for Denture Bases
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(5), 305; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8050305 - 06 May 2018
Cited by 15
Abstract
Aim: The aim of this study was to investigate the selected properties of zinc oxide- polymethyl methacrylate (ZnO-PMMA) nanocomposites that can influence the microorganism deposition on their surface. Materials and Methods: Non-commercial ZnO-NPs were prepared, characterized and used for the preparation of PMMA [...] Read more.
Aim: The aim of this study was to investigate the selected properties of zinc oxide- polymethyl methacrylate (ZnO-PMMA) nanocomposites that can influence the microorganism deposition on their surface. Materials and Methods: Non-commercial ZnO-NPs were prepared, characterized and used for the preparation of PMMA nanocomposite. Roughness, absorbability, contact angle and hardness of this new nanomaterial were evaluated. PMMA without ZnO-NPs served as control. Outcomes: Compared to unenriched PMMA, incorporation of ZnO-NPs to 7.5% for PMMA nanocomposite increases the hardness (by 5.92%) and the hydrophilicity. After modification of the material with zinc oxide nanoparticles the roughness parameter did not change. All tested materials showed absorption within the range of 1.82 to 2.03%, which meets the requirements of International Organization for Standardization (ISO) standards for denture base polymers. Conclusions: The results showed no significant deterioration in the properties of acrylic resin that could disqualify the nanocomposite for clinical use. Increased hydrophilicity and hardness with absorbability within the normal range can explain the reduced microorganism growth on the denture base, as has been proven in a previous study. Full article
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Review

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Open AccessReview
ZnO Nanostructures for Drug Delivery and Theranostic Applications
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(4), 268; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8040268 - 23 Apr 2018
Cited by 39
Abstract
In the last two decades, zinc oxide (ZnO) semiconductor Quantum dots (QDs) have been shown to have fantastic luminescent properties, which together with their low-cost, low-toxicity and biocompatibility have turned these nanomaterials into one of the main candidates for bio-imaging. The discovery of [...] Read more.
In the last two decades, zinc oxide (ZnO) semiconductor Quantum dots (QDs) have been shown to have fantastic luminescent properties, which together with their low-cost, low-toxicity and biocompatibility have turned these nanomaterials into one of the main candidates for bio-imaging. The discovery of other desirable traits such as their ability to produce destructive reactive oxygen species (ROS), high catalytic efficiency, strong adsorption capability and high isoelectric point, also make them promising nanomaterials for therapeutic and diagnostic functions. Herein, we review the recent progress on the use of ZnO based nanoplatforms in drug delivery and theranostic in several diseases such as bacterial infection and cancer. Full article
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