Curing cancer has been one of the greatest conundrums in the modern medical field. To reduce side-effects associated with the traditional cancer therapy such as radiotherapy and chemotherapy, photothermal therapy (PTT) has been recognized as one of the most promising treatments for cancer over recent years. PTT relies on ablation agents such as nanomaterials with a photothermal effect, for converting light into heat. In this way, elevated temperature could kill cancer cells while avoiding significant side effects on normal cells. This theory works because normal cells have a higher heat tolerance than cancer cells. Thus, nanomaterials with photothermal effects have attracted enormous attention due to their selectivity and non-invasive attributes. This review article summarizes the current status of employing nanomaterials with photothermal effects for anti-cancer treatment. Mechanisms of the photothermal effect and various factors affecting photothermal performance will be discussed. Efficient and selective PTT is believed to play an increasingly prominent role in cancer treatment. Moreover, merging PTT with other methods of cancer therapies is also discussed as a future trend.
A virus‐activated matrix is developed to overcome the challenge of forming vascularized bone tissue. It is generated by filling a 3D printed bioceramic scaffold with phage nanofibers displaying high‐density RGD peptide. After it is seeded with mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) and implanted into a bone defect, the phage nanofibers induce osteogenesis and angiogenesis by activating endothelialization and osteogenic differentiation of MSCs.
Human body motion can generate a biological electric field and a current, creating a voltage gradient of -10 to -90 mV across cell membranes. In turn, this gradient triggers cells to transmit signals that alter cell proliferation and differentiation. Several cell types, counting osteoblasts, neurons and cardiomyocytes, are relatively sensitive to electrical signal stimulation. Employment of electrical signals in modulating cell proliferation and differentiation inspires us to use the electroactive polymers to achieve electrical stimulation for repairing impaired tissues. Electroactive polymers have found numerous applications in biomedicine due to their capability in effectively delivering electrical signals to the seeded cells, such as biosensing, tissue regeneration, drug delivery, and biomedical implants. Here we will summarize the electrical characteristics of electroactive polymers, which enables them to electrically influence cellular function and behavior, including conducting polymers, piezoelectric polymers, and polyelectrolyte gels. We will also discuss the biological response to these electroactive polymers under electrical stimulation. In particular, we focus this review on their applications in regenerating different tissues, including bone, nerve, heart muscle, cartilage and skin. Additionally, we discuss the challenges in tissue regeneration applications of electroactive polymers. We conclude that electroactive polymers have a great potential as regenerative biomaterials, due to their ability to stimulate desirable outcomes in various electrically responsive cells.
This review presents an overview on the application of latent fingerprint development techniques in forensic sciences. At present, traditional developing methods such as powder dusting, cyanoacrylate fuming, chemical method, and small particle reagent method, have all been gradually compromised given their emerging drawbacks such as low contrast, sensitivity, and selectivity, as well as high toxicity. Recently, much attention has been paid to the use of fluorescent nanomaterials including quantum dots (QDs) and rare earth upconversion fluorescent nanomaterials (UCNMs) due to their unique optical and chemical properties. Thus, this review lays emphasis on latent fingerprint development based on QDs and UCNMs. Compared to latent fingerprint development by traditional methods, the new methods using fluorescent nanomaterials can achieve high contrast, sensitivity, and selectivity while showing reduced toxicity. Overall, this review provides a systematic overview on such methods.
Antibacterial metal ions, such as Ag+, Zn2+ and Cu2+, have been extensively used in medical implants and devices due to their strong broad spectrum of antibacterial activity. However, it is still a controversial issue as to whether they can show the desired antibacterial activity while being toxic to mammalian cells. It is very important to balance their antibacterial effectiveness with minimal damage to mammalian cells. Toward this end, this study is to identify the suitable concentrations of these three ions at which they can effectively kill two types of clinically relevant bacteria (Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) and Escherichia coli (E. coli)) but show no obvious cytotoxicity on fibroblasts. Such concentration ranges are found to be 2.5 × 10−7 M–10−6 M, 10−5 M–10−4 M, and 10−5 M–10−4 M for Ag+, Zn2+, and Cu2+, respectively. Investigation of their antibacterial mechanism shows that these three metal ions all show antibacterial property through a mechanism of damaging bacterial cell membranes by the generation of reactive oxygen species but surprisingly preserving the integrity of bacterial genomic DNA. The encouraging results indicate that antibacterial metal ions with controlled concentrations can bring considerable benefits to biomedical applications.
Implantation of stem cells for tissue regeneration faces significant challenges such as immune rejection and teratoma formation. Cell-free tissue regeneration thus has a potential to avoid these problems. Stem cell derived exosomes do not cause immune rejection or generate malignant tumors. Here, exosomes that can induce osteogenic differentiation of human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) are identified and used to decorate 3D-printed titanium alloy scaffolds to achieve cell-free bone regeneration. Specifically, the exosomes secreted by hMSCs osteogenically pre-differentiated for different times are used to induce the osteogenesis of hMSCs. It is discovered that pre-differentiation for 10 and 15 days leads to the production of osteogenic exosomes. The purified exosomes are then loaded into the scaffolds. It is found that the cell-free exosome-coated scaffolds regenerate bone tissue as efficiently as hMSC-seeded exosome-free scaffolds within 12 weeks. RNA-sequencing suggests that the osteogenic exosomes induce the osteogenic differentiation by using their cargos, including upregulated osteogenic miRNAs (Hsa-miR-146a-5p, Hsa-miR-503-5p, Hsa-miR-483-3p, and Hsa-miR-129-5p) or downregulated anti-osteogenic miRNAs (Hsa-miR-32-5p, Hsa-miR-133a-3p, and Hsa-miR-204-5p), to activate the PI3K/Akt and MAPK signaling pathways. Consequently, identification of osteogenic exosomes secreted by pre-differentiated stem cells and the use of them to replace stem cells represent a novel cell-free bone regeneration strategy. 1. Introduction Bone defects can be caused by various clinical diseases such as bone infections, bone tumor, skeletal abnormalities,
SIRT6, a member of the NAD(+)-dependent class III deacetylase sirtuin family, has been revealed to play important roles in promoting cellular resistance against oxidative stress. The formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and oxidative stress are the crucial mechanisms underlying cellular damage and dysfunction in cardiac ischemia/reperfusion (I/R) injury, but the role of SIRT6 in I/R-induced ROS and oxidative stress is poorly understood. In this study, by using heterozygous SIRT6 knockout (SIRT6(+/-)) mice and cultured neonatal cardiomyocyte models, we investigated how SIRT6 mediates oxidative stress and myocardial injury during I/R. Partial knockout (KO) of SIRT6 aggravated myocardial damage, ventricular remodeling, and oxidative stress in mice subjected to myocardial I/R, whereas restoration of SIRT6 expression by direct cardiac injection of adenoviral constructs encoding SIRT6 reversed these deleterious effects of SIRT6 KO in the ischemic heart. In addition, partial deletion of the SIRT6 gene decreased myocardial functional recovery following I/R in a Langendorff perfusion model. Similarly, the protective effects of SIRT6 were also observed in cultured cardiomyocytes following hypoxia/reoxygenation. Intriguingly, SIRT6 was noticed to up-regulate AMP/ATP and then activate the adenosine 5'-monophosphate-activated protein kinase (AMPK)-forkhead box O3α (FoxO3α) axis and further initiated the downstream antioxidant-encoding gene expression (manganese superoxide dismutase and catalase), thereby decreasing cellular levels of oxidative stress and mediating cardioprotection in the ischemic heart. These results suggest that SIRT6 protects the heart from I/R injury through FoxO3α activation in the ischemic heart in an AMP/ATP-induced AMPK-dependent way, thus upregulating antioxidants and suppressing oxidative stress.
A theranostic platform combining synergistic therapy and real-time imaging attracts enormous attention but still faces great challenges, such as tedious modifications and lack of efficient accumulation in tumor. Here, a novel type of theranostic agent, bismuth sulfide@mesoporous silica (Bi2S3@ mPS) core-shell nanoparticles (NPs), for targeted image-guided therapy of human epidermal growth factor receptor-2 (HER-2) positive breast cancer is developed. To generate such NPs, polyvinylpyrrolidone decorated rod-like Bi2S3 NPs are chemically encapsulated with a mesoporous silica (mPS) layer and loaded with an anticancer drug, doxorubicin. The resultant NPs are then chemically conjugated with trastuzumab (Tam, a monoclonal antibody targeting HER-2 overexpressed breast cancer cells) to form Tam-Bi2S3@mPS NPs. By in vitro and in vivo studies, it is demonstrated that the Tam-Bi2S3@mPS bear multiple desired features for cancer theranostics, including good biocompatibility and drug loading ability as well as precise and active tumor targeting and accumulation (with a bismuth content in tumor being ≈16 times that of nontargeted group). They can simultaneously serve both as an excellent contrast enhancement probe (due to the presence of strong X-ray-attenuating bismuth element) for computed tomography deep tissue tumor imaging and as a therapeutic agent to destruct tumors and prevent metastasis by synergistic photothermalchemo therapy.
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