Carbon Nanotubes in the Biological Interphase: The Relevance of Noncovalence

Authors

  • Yeonju Lee,

    1. Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Gwangju Institute of Science and Technology (GIST), 1 Oryong-dong, Buk-gu, Gwangju 500-712 (South Korea)
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  • Kurt E. Geckeler

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Nanobio Materials and Electronics, World-Class University (WCU), Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Institute of Medical System Engineering, Gwangju Institute of Science and Technology (GIST), 1 Oryong-dong, Buk-gu, Gwangju 500-712 (South Korea)
    • Department of Nanobio Materials and Electronics, World-Class University (WCU), Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Institute of Medical System Engineering, Gwangju Institute of Science and Technology (GIST), 1 Oryong-dong, Buk-gu, Gwangju 500-712 (South Korea).
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Abstract

With the increasing interest in the biological applications of carbon nanotubes, their interactions in the biological interphase and their general cytotoxicity have become major issues. In spite of their salient properties, major hurdles still exist for their use in biological applications, due to their main characteristics, including their hydrophobic surfaces and tendency to aggregate, as well as their unknown interactions in the cellular interphase. In this Research News, these characteristics of carbon nanotubes, a model nanomaterial, are investigated. Thus, the cytotoxicity of carbon nanotubes, the influence of functionalization, as well as their interactions with different mammalian cell lines are studied. Moreover, suggestions for the improvement of their biocompatibility and the design of biocompatible carbon nanotube-based systems are provided.

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