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Nano Today. 2009 Oct 5;4(5):414-428.

Multifunctional Quantum Dots for Personalized Medicine.

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  • 1Department of Bioengineering, University of Washington, 1705 NE Pacific Street, Seattle, WA, 98195, USA.


Successes in biomedical research and state-of-the-art medicine have undoubtedly improved the quality of life. However, a number of diseases, such as cancer, immunodeficiencies, and neurological disorders, still evade conventional diagnostic and therapeutic approaches. A transformation towards personalized medicine may help to combat these diseases. For this, identification of disease molecular fingerprints and their association with prognosis and targeted therapy must become available. Quantum dots (QDs), semiconductor nanocrystals with unique photo-physical properties, represent a novel class of fluorescence probes to address many of the needs of personalized medicine. This review outlines the properties of QDs that make them a suitable platform for advancing personalized medicine, examines several proof-of-concept studies showing utility of QDs for clinically relevant applications, and discusses current challenges in introducing QDs into clinical practice.

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