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Biomaterials. 2012 Jan;33(1):189-206. doi: 10.1016/j.biomaterials.2011.09.032. Epub 2011 Sep 28.

Nanoprobes for in vitro diagnostics of cancer and infectious diseases.

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State Key Laboratory of Physical Chemistry of Solid Surfaces, The Key Laboratory for Chemical Biology of Fujian Province and Department of Chemical Biology, College of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Xiamen University, Xiamen 361005, China.


The successful and explosive development of nanotechnology is significantly impacting the fields of biology and medicine. Among the spectacular developments of nanobiotechnology, interest has grown in the use of nanomaterials as nanoprobes for bioanalysis and diagnosis. Herein, we review state-of-the-art nanomaterial-based probes and discuss their applications in in vitro diagnostics (IVD) and challenges in bringing these fields together. Major classes of nanoprobes include quantum dots (QDs), plasmonic nanoparticles, magnetic nanoparticles, nanotubes, nanowires, and multifunctional nanomaterials. With the advantages of high volume/surface ratio, surface tailorability, multifunctionality, and intrinsic properties, nanoprobes have tremendous applications in the areas of biomarker discovery, diagnostics of infectious diseases, and cancer detection. The distinguishing features of nanoprobes for in vitro use, such as harmlessness, ultrasensitivity, multiplicity, and point-of-care use, will bring a bright future of nanodiagnosis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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