MULTI-FUNCTIONAL POLYMERS FOR THE COATINGS OF NANOPARTICLES
Nanomedicine covers a set of interdisciplinary research at the interface between biology, physics and chemistry. Although polymers were often stigmatized because of the lack of accuracy in their structures in the bio-medical field, recent research highlights a growing interest in functional polymers and copolymers for the implementation of multi-functional nanoparticle coatings that are resistant to protein adsorption and provide high stability, stealth and increased biodistribution in vivo.
For example: polymer coated gadolinium nanoparticles exhibit near-infrared persistent luminescence properties and can be used as in vivo nanotools; biomimetic apatite-based functional nanoparticles have shown interest in diseased cells diagnosis; CeO2 nanoparticles have shown powerful antioxidant properties of interest in experimental stroke. Among these nanoparticles, superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (SPIONs) are certainly the most promising material for bio-medical applications and have been used extensively in cancer therapy and diagnosis via magnetic targeting or magnetic resonance imaging.
To reach optimal efficiency, these nanoparticles should be coated to improve their biocompatibility, increase their cellular uptake, enhance their circulation and prevent renal clearance. The coating may also be functionalized on their surface with specific moieties to enable the grafting of targeting molecules such as peptides, antibodies or oligoanilines.