Carbon Nanotubes and Drug Delivery

Abstract

The development of nanoparticles as drug carriers is being increased in the past decades as the efficient transport system for drug molecules which offer a variety of biotechnology applications. Among the various nanoparticles, carbon nanotubes (CNTs) have emerged as most promising nanomaterials for biomedical applications and drug delivery due to their small size with large surface area, polyaromatic structure, the possibility of functionalisations and chemical stability which make them able to interact with various small molecules including drugs. The present review highlights different aspects of CNTs including functionalisation, cellular uptake and drug loading capacity along with their applications as potential cargo of therapeutic molecule in drug delivery.

Key Concepts

  • Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are the most promising nanomaterials for biomedical applications.
  • Scientific community is focusing on the development of targeted drug delivery systems.
  • Single‐walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) have well‐defined dimensions as compared to multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) and considered to be more stable nanostructure.
  • The length of the CNTs varies from micrometre to nanometres, which can be further shortened by any physical or chemical method.
  • The functionalised CNTs along with its void structure can provide more opportunities with improved and promising pharmacological applications.
  • The solubility and dispensability of CNTs can be improved or modulated by functionalisation approach, which provides longer stabilisation.
  • The functionalised CNTs have great permeability and it can easily cross the cell membranes.
  • Safety is the basic requirement of any material that is being used as a medicine.

Keywords: carbon nanotubes; cytotoxicity; functionalisation; targeted drug delivery; biomedical applications

Figure 1. Classification and physiochemical properties of CNTs.
Figure 2. Mechanisms for internalisation of CNTs.
Figure 3. Types of functionalisation in CNTs.
Figure 4. Applications of CNTs.
close

References

Allen TM and Cullis PR (2004) Drug delivery systems: entering the mainstream. Science 303 (5665): 1818–1822. DOI: 10.1126/science.1095833.

Alpturk, O. and C. Sengel (2018). Carbon nanotubes for drug delivery. Nanoconjugate Nanocarriers for Drug Delivery. 12, pp. 348–349.

Avti P, Patel S and Sitharaman B (2011) Nanobiomaterials Handbook, Chapter 1: Nanobiomaterials: Current and Future Prospects, pp 1–24. CRC Press: UK.

Beg S, Rahman M, Jain A, et al. (2018) Chapter 4. Emergence in the functionalized carbon nanotubes as smart nanocarriers for drug delivery applications. Fullerenes, Graphenes and Nanotubes 1: 105–133.

Bethune DS, Kiang CH, de Vries MS, et al. (1993) Cobalt‐catalysed growth of carbon nanotubes with single‐atomic‐layer walls. Nature 363 (6430): 605–607.

Biagiotti G, Ligi MC, Fedeli S, et al. (2018) Metformin salts with oxidized multiwalled carbon nanotubes: In vitro biological activity and inhibition of CNT internalization. Journal of Drug Delivery Science and Technology 47: 254–258.

Ebbesen TW and Ajayan PM (1992) Large‐scale synthesis of carbon nanotubes. Nature 358 (6383): 220–222.

Falank C, Tasset AW, Farrell M, et al. (2019) Development of medical‐grade, discrete, multi‐walled carbon nanotubes as drug delivery molecules to enhance the treatment of hematological malignancies. Nanomedicine: Nanotechnology, Biology and Medicine 20: 102025.

Fisher C, Rider A, Han ZJ, et al. (2012) Applications and nanotoxicity of carbon nanotubes and graphene in biomedicine. Journal of Nanomaterials 2012: 315185.

Foldvari M and Bagonluri M (2008) Carbon nanotubes as functional excipients for nanomedicines: II. Drug delivery and biocompatibility issues. Nanomedicine 4 (3): 183–200.

Francis AP and Devasena T (2018) Toxicity of carbon nanotubes: a review. Toxicology and Industrial Health 34 (3): 200–210.

Gangrade A and Mandal BB (2019) Injectable Carbon Nanotube Impregnated Silk Based Multifunctional Hydrogel for Localized Targeted and On‐Demand Anticancer Drug Delivery. ACS Biomaterials Science & Engineering 5 (5): 2365–2381.

Guo T, Nikolaev P, Thess A, Colbert D and Smalley RE (1995) Catalytic Growth of Single‐Walled Nanotubes by Laser Vaporization. Chemical Physics Letters 243: 49–54.

Harsha PJ, Thotakura N, Kumar M, et al. (2019) A novel PEGylated carbon nanotube conjugated mangiferin: An explorative nanomedicine for brain cancer cells. Journal of Drug Delivery Science and Technology 53: 101186.

Heersche HB, Jarillo‐Herrero P, Oostinga JB, Vandersypen LM and Morpurgo AF (2007) Bipolar supercurrent in graphene. Nature 446 (7131): 56–59.

Iijima S, Ajayan PM and Ichihashi T (1992) Growth model for carbon nanotubes. Physical Review Letters 69 (21): 3100–3103.

Jain AK, Dubey V, Mehra NK, et al. (2009) Carbohydrate‐conjugated multiwalled carbon nanotubes: development and characterization. Nanomedicine 5 (4): 432–442.

Jeevanandam J, Barhoum A, Chan YS, Dufresne A and Danquah MK (2018) Review on nanoparticles and nanostructured materials: history, sources, toxicity and regulations. Beilstein Journal of Nanotechnology 9: 1050–1074.

Kamalha E, Shi X, Mwasiagi JI and Zeng Y (2012) Nanotechnology and carbon nanotubes; a review of potential in drug delivery. Macromolecular Research 20 (9): 891–898.

Karchemski F, Zucker D, Barenholz Y and Regev O (2012) Carbon nanotubes‐liposomes conjugate as a platform for drug delivery into cells. Journal of Control Release 160 (2): 339–345.

Karimi M, Solati N, Amiri M, et al. (2015) Carbon nanotubes part I: preparation of a novel and versatile drug‐delivery vehicle. Expert Opinion on Drug Delivery 12 (7): 1071–1087.

Kayat J, Gajbhiye V, Tekade RK and Jain NK (2011) Pulmonary toxicity of carbon nanotubes: a systematic report. Nanomedicine 7 (1): 40–49.

Kostarelos K, Lacerda L, Pastorin G, et al. (2007) Cellular uptake of functionalized carbon nanotubes is independent of functional group and cell type. Nature Nanotechnology 2 (2): 108–113.

Lacerda L, Russier J, Pastorin G, et al. (2012) Translocation mechanisms of chemically functionalised carbon nanotubes across plasma membranes. Biomaterials 33 (11): 3334–3343.

Li H, Guan L, Shi Z and Gu Z (2004) Direct synthesis of high purity single‐walled carbon nanotube fibers by arc discharge. The Journal of Physical Chemistry B 108 (15): 4573–4575.

Liu C, Cong H, Li F, et al. (1999) Semi‐continuous synthesis of single‐walled carbon nanotubes by a hydrogen arc discharge method. Carbon 37: 1865–1868.

Liu Y, Zhao Y, Sun B and Chen C (2013) Understanding the toxicity of carbon nanotubes. Accounts of Chemical Research 46 (3): 702–713.

Mehra NK, Jain AK, Lodhi N, et al. (2008) Challenges in the use of carbon nanotubes for biomedical applications. Critical Reviews in Therapeutic Drug Carrier Systems 25 (2): 169–206.

Mehra NK and Jain NK (2015) One platform comparison of estrone and folic acid anchored surface engineered MWCNTs for doxorubicin delivery. Molecular Pharmaceutics 12 (2): 630–643.

Mishra DK, Yadav KS, Prabhakar B and Gaud RS (2018) 14 – Nanocomposite for cancer targeted drug delivery. In: Inamuddin, Asiri AM and Mohammad A (eds) Applications of Nanocomposite Materials in Drug Delivery, pp 323–337. Woodhead Publishing: UK.

Moore TL, Grimes SW, Lewis RL and Alexis F (2014) Multilayered polymer‐coated carbon nanotubes to deliver dasatinib. Molecular Pharmaceutics 11 (1): 276–282.

O'Shaughnessy PT, Adamcakova‐Dodd A, Altmaier R and Thorne PS (2014) Assessment of the aerosol generation and toxicity of carbon nanotubes. Nanomaterials (Basel) 4 (2): 439–453.

Pantarotto D, Singh R, McCarthy D, et al. (2004) Functionalized carbon nanotubes for plasmid DNA gene delivery. Angewandte Chemie International Edition in English 43 (39): 5242–5246.

Popov VN (2004) Carbon nanotubes: properties and application. Materials Science and Engineering: R: Reports 43 (3): 61–102.

Prajapati SK, Jain A, Shrivastava C and Jain AK (2019) Hyaluronic acid conjugated multi‐walled carbon nanotubes for colon cancer targeting. International Journal of Biological Macromolecules 123: 691–703.

Saito N, Haniu H, Usui Y, et al. (2014) Safe clinical use of carbon nanotubes as innovative biomaterials. Chemical Reviews 114 (11): 6040–6079.

Saliev T (2019) The advances in biomedical applications of carbon nanotubes. C — Journal of Carbon Research 5 (2): 29.

Sharma P, Mehra NK, Jain K and Jain NK (2016) Biomedical applications of carbon nanotubes: a critical review. Current Drug Delivery 13 (6): 796–817.

Sharma S, Naskar S and Kuotsu K (2019) A review on carbon nanotubes: Influencing toxicity and emerging carrier for platinum based cytotoxic drug application. Journal of Drug Delivery Science and Technology 51: 708–720.

Sharmeen S, Rahman AFMM, Lubna MM, et al. (2018) Polyethylene glycol functionalized carbon nanotubes/gelatin‐chitosan nanocomposite: an approach for significant drug release. Bioactive Materials 3 (3): 236–244.

Simon J, Flahaut E and Golzio M (2019) Overview of carbon nanotubes for biomedical applications. Materials (Basel, Switzerland) 12 (4): 624. DOI: 10.3390/ma12040624.

Tang AC, Hwang GL, Tsai SJ, et al. (2012) Biosafety of non‐surface modified carbon nanocapsules as a potential alternative to carbon nanotubes for drug delivery purposes. PLoS One 7 (3): e32893.

Torchilin VP (2010) Passive and active drug targeting: drug delivery to tumors as an example. Handbook of Experimental Pharmacology 197: 3–53.

Villa CH, McDevitt MR, Escorcia FE, et al. (2008) Synthesis and biodistribution of oligonucleotide‐functionalized, tumor‐targetable carbon nanotubes. Nano Letters 8 (12): 4221–4228.

Vizuete M, Barrejon M, Gomez‐Escalonilla MJ and Langa F (2012) Endohedral and exohedral hybrids involving fullerenes and carbon nanotubes. Nanoscale 4 (15): 4370–4381.

Wei G, Pan C, Reichert J and Jandt KD (2010) Controlled assembly of protein‐protected gold nanoparticles on noncovalent functionalized carbon nanotubes. Carbon 48 (3): 645–653.

Wu W, Li R, Bian X, et al. (2009) Covalently combining carbon nanotubes with anticancer agent: preparation and antitumor activity. ACS Nano 3 (9): 2740–2750.

Xing J, Liu Z, Huang Y, et al. (2016) Lentinan‐modified carbon nanotubes as an antigen delivery system modulate immune response in vitro and in vivo. ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces 8 (30): 19276–19283.

Yu X, Trase I, Ren M, et al. (2016) Design of nanoparticle‐based carriers for targeted drug delivery. Journal of Nanomaterials 2016: 1087250.

Zhang L‐P, Tan X‐X, Huang Y‐P and Liu Z‐S (2018) Floating liquid crystalline molecularly imprinted polymer coated carbon nanotubes for levofloxacin delivery. European Journal of Pharmaceutics and Biopharmaceutics 127: 150–158.

Zhang W, Zhang Z and Zhang Y (2011) The application of carbon nanotubes in target drug delivery systems for cancer therapies. Nanoscale Research Letters 6 (1): 555.

Zhu H‐W, Jiang B, Xu C‐I and Wu DH (2003) Synthesis of high quality single‐walled carbon nanotube silks by the arc discharge technique. The Journal of Physical Chemistry B 107 (27): 6514–6518.

Contact Editor close
Submit a note to the editor about this article by filling in the form below.

* Required Field

How to Cite close
Maheshwari, Nupur, Maheshwari, Neelesh, Dhote, Vinod, and Mishra, Dinesh K(May 2020) Carbon Nanotubes and Drug Delivery. In: eLS. John Wiley & Sons Ltd, Chichester. http://www.els.net [doi: 10.1002/9780470015902.a0028890]