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Asbestos-like Pathogenicity of Long Carbon Nanotubes Alleviated by Chemical Functionalization

Authors

  • Dr. Hanene Ali-Boucetta,

    1. Nanomedicine Laboratory, UCL School of Pharmacy, University College London, Brunswick Square, London WC1N 1AX (UK)
    2. Current address: Pharmacy, Pharmacology and Therapeutics, School of Experimental and Clinical Medicine, Medical School, University of Birmingham, Birmingham B15 2TT (UK)
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  • Dr. Antonio Nunes,

    1. Nanomedicine Laboratory, UCL School of Pharmacy, University College London, Brunswick Square, London WC1N 1AX (UK)
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  • Dr. Raquel Sainz,

    1. CNRS, Institut de Biologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire, Laboratoire d'Immunopathologie et Chimie Thérapeutique, 67000 Strasbourg (France)
    2. Current address: NanoInnova Technologies SL, Parque Científico de Madrid, Madrid (Spain)
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  • Dr.  M. Antonia Herrero,

    1. Departamento de Química Orgánica, Facultad de Química, Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha, 13071 Ciudad Real (Spain)
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  • Dr. Bowen Tian,

    1. Nanomedicine Laboratory, UCL School of Pharmacy, University College London, Brunswick Square, London WC1N 1AX (UK)
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  • Prof. Maurizio Prato,

    Corresponding author
    1. Dipartimento di Scienze Farmaceutiche, Università di Trieste, 34127 Trieste (Italy)
    • Maurizio Prato, Dipartimento di Scienze Farmaceutiche, Università di Trieste, 34127 Trieste (Italy)===

      Alberto Bianco, CNRS, Institut de Biologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire, Laboratoire d'Immunopathologie et Chimie Thérapeutique, 67000 Strasbourg (France)===

      Kostas Kostarelos, Nanomedicine Laboratory, UCL School of Pharmacy, University College London, Brunswick Square, London WC1N 1AX (UK)===

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  • Dr. Alberto Bianco,

    Corresponding author
    1. CNRS, Institut de Biologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire, Laboratoire d'Immunopathologie et Chimie Thérapeutique, 67000 Strasbourg (France)
    • Maurizio Prato, Dipartimento di Scienze Farmaceutiche, Università di Trieste, 34127 Trieste (Italy)===

      Alberto Bianco, CNRS, Institut de Biologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire, Laboratoire d'Immunopathologie et Chimie Thérapeutique, 67000 Strasbourg (France)===

      Kostas Kostarelos, Nanomedicine Laboratory, UCL School of Pharmacy, University College London, Brunswick Square, London WC1N 1AX (UK)===

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  • Prof. Kostas Kostarelos

    Corresponding author
    1. Nanomedicine Laboratory, UCL School of Pharmacy, University College London, Brunswick Square, London WC1N 1AX (UK)
    • Maurizio Prato, Dipartimento di Scienze Farmaceutiche, Università di Trieste, 34127 Trieste (Italy)===

      Alberto Bianco, CNRS, Institut de Biologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire, Laboratoire d'Immunopathologie et Chimie Thérapeutique, 67000 Strasbourg (France)===

      Kostas Kostarelos, Nanomedicine Laboratory, UCL School of Pharmacy, University College London, Brunswick Square, London WC1N 1AX (UK)===

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  • Part of the work described in this article was supported by the European Union FP7 ANTICARB program (HEALTH-2007-201587) and ERC Advanced Grant Carbonanobridge (ERC-2008-AdG-227135). We wish to thank the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS), the University of Trieste, the Italian Ministry of Education MIUR (Cofin Prot. 20085M27SS and FIRB prot. RBAP11ETKA), Regione Friuli-Venezia Giulia (Nanocancer), and AIRC (AIRC 5 per mille, Rif. 12214 “Application of Advanced Nanotechnology in the Development of Innovative Cancer Diagnostics Tools”). H.A.-B. was a recipient of the postdoctoral Maplethorpe Fellowship from the University of London. R.S. wishes to acknowledge FP6 European Union program NEURONANO (NMP4-CT-2006-031847). We would like to acknowledge Prof. K. Donaldson and Dr. C. Poland at the MRC/University of Edinburgh Centre for Inflammation Research for their advice, critical reading of this manuscript, and the provision of the long, pristine MWNTs (NTlong). The reductively functionalized MWNTs (NT-Alkyl) were provided by Dr. A. Higginbotham-Duque and Prof. J. Tour at Rice University, Texas (USA). Prof. J. Tour is also acknowledged for critically reading this manuscript.

Abstract

original image

Sometimes shorter is better: The apparent similarity between multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWNTs) and asbestos fibers has generated serious concerns about their safety profile. The asbestos-like pathogenicity observed for long, pristine nanotubes (NTlong, see scheme) can be completely alleviated if their effective length is decreased as a result of chemical functionalization, such as with tri(ethylene glycol) (TEG).

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