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Higher dispersion efficacy of functionalized carbon nanotubes in chemical and biological environments

Heister, Elena and Lamprecht, Constanze and Neves, Vera and Tîlmaciu, Carmen and Datas, Lucien and Flahaut, Emmanuel and Soula, Brigitte and Hinterdorfer, Peter and Coley, Helen M. and Silva, S. Ravi P. and McFadden, Johnjoe Higher dispersion efficacy of functionalized carbon nanotubes in chemical and biological environments. (2010) ACS Nano, 4 (5). 2615-2626. ISSN 1936-0851

(Document in English)

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/nn100069k


Aqueous dispersions of functionalized carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are now widely used for biomedical applications. Their stability in different in vitro or in vivo environments, however, depends on a wide range of parameters, such as pH and salt concentrations of the surrounding medium, and length, aspect ratio, surface charge, and functionalization of the applied CNTs. Although many of these aspects have been investigated separately, no study is available in the literature to date, which examines these parameters simultaneously. Therefore, we have chosen five types of carbon nanotubes, varying in their dimensions and surface properties, for a multidimensional analysis of dispersion stability in salt solutions of differing pH and concentrations. Furthermore, we examine the dispersion stability of oxidized CNTs in biological fluids, such as cellular growth media and human plasma, and their toxicity toward cancer cells. To enhance dispersibility and biocompatibility, the influence of different functionalization schemes is studied. The results of our investigations indicate that both CNT dimensions and surface functionalization have a significant influence on their dispersion and in vitro behavior. In particular, factors such as a short aspect ratio, presence of oxidation debris and serum proteins, low salt concentration, and an appropriate pH are shown to improve the dispersion stability. Furthermore, covalent surface functionalization with amine-terminated polyethylene glycol (PEG) is demonstrated to stabilize CNT dispersions in various media and to reduce deleterious effects on cultured cells. These findings provide crucial data for the development of biofunctionalization protocols, for example, for future cancer theranostics, and optimizing the stability of functionalized CNTs in varied biological environments.

Item Type:Article
Additional Information:The definitive version is available at http://pubs.acs.org/
HAL Id:hal-03474544
Audience (journal):International peer-reviewed journal
Uncontrolled Keywords:
Institution:French research institutions > Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - CNRS (FRANCE)
Université de Toulouse > Institut National Polytechnique de Toulouse - Toulouse INP (FRANCE)
Université de Toulouse > Université Toulouse III - Paul Sabatier - UT3 (FRANCE)
Other partners > Linz Johannes Kepler University (AUSTRIA)
Other partners > University of Surrey (UNITED KINGDOM)
Laboratory name:
Deposited On:29 Apr 2011 13:54

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