Targeted and theranostic applications for nanotechnologies in medicine

Saini Setua, Meena Jaggi, Murali M. Yallapu, Subhash C. Chauhan, Anna Danilushkina, Hojae Lee, Insung S. Choi, Rawil Fakhrullin, Lorenzo Degli Esposti, Anna Tampieri, Michele Iafisco, Maxim Shevtsov, Gabriele Multhoff

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

8 Scopus citations


The International Agency for Research on Cancer of the World Health Organization predicts that there will be ∼13-17 million cancer-related deaths each year worldwide by 2030. Cancer is still an unmanageable disease, even though numerous prevention, diagnosis, and therapeutic options exist. The main obstructions are late diagnosis, tumor metastasis, drug resistance, and recurrence. Nanoparticle technology as a new therapeutic intervention has shown to be promising in in vitro, in vivo, and clinical scenarios. Multifunctional magnetic nanoparticles can be implemented for early drug delivery, diagnosis, detection, and thermal therapy. Future theranostic applications in clinical trials comprise of combination drug delivery, magnetic resonance imaging, and hyperthermia. In Subchapter 6.1, we present the design of multifunctional magnetic nanoparticles, their physicochemical properties, and preclinical/clinical applications in cancer therapeutics. Several emerging biomedical technologies, such as cell delivery and tissue engineering, need a powerful methodology to manipulate with live biological cells. Rendering cells with magnetic functionality is one of the promising technologies to produce magnetically responsive cells that can be directed by an external magnetic field. Cell surface engineering offers a good opportunity to tailor magnetic nanosized particles onto the surfaces (cell walls and/or cellular membranes) of microbial and mammalian cells. In Subchapter 6.2, we overview the recent advances in fabrication of magnetically responsive “cyborg” cells. Synthetic calcium phosphates are the most widely accepted biomaterials for the repair and reconstruction of bone tissue defects thanks to their excellent features, including biocompatibility, bioactivity, osteocondutivity, nontoxicity, and nonimmunogenicity. The recent advancements in the nanotechnological approaches to prepare calcium phosphate-based materials with tailored surface characteristics, nanometric dimensions, and colloidal stability have opened new perspectives in their use in nanomedicine. Nanomedicine is defined as the application of nanomaterials to address healthcare problems. The recent trend in this field is the achievement of theranostic nanosystems that can fulfill a therapeutic action and at the same time deliver diagnostic information through an imaging probe. Subchapter 6.3 outlines the principal characteristics of calcium phosphates to be used as promising theranostic agents and on the basis of a large literature survey, the most recent reports on multifunctional theranostic calcium phosphate nanoparticles are discussed. Glioblastoma is the most common and most aggressive primary tumor of the brain with a high mortality rate in adults. Despite multimodality treatment regimens, including surgery, radiotherapy, and the alkylating drug temozolomide, average survival following diagnosis remains only over 1 year. Nanoparticle-based theranostic approaches aim to improve early diagnosis, as well as therapy of malignant brain tumors. This article will focus on recent research progress concerning the application of functionalized nanocarriers for detection, targeting, and therapy of brain tumors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationNanotechnologies in Preventive and Regenerative Medicine
Subtitle of host publicationAn Emerging Big Picture
Number of pages113
ISBN (Electronic)9780323480635
ISBN (Print)9780323480642
StatePublished - Jan 1 2017


  • alternating magnetic field
  • bioinspired materials
  • biosensors
  • brain tumor
  • calcium phosphate
  • cell surface engineering
  • drug delivery
  • focused ultrasound
  • hyperthermia
  • imaging
  • labeled cells
  • magnetic nanoparticles
  • magnetic resonance imaging
  • magnetic targeting
  • magnetically responsive cells
  • nanoparticles
  • surface coating
  • targeted delivery
  • targeting
  • theranostic
  • therapy
  • tissue engineering

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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