Melanin nanoparticles as a promising tool for biomedical applications – a review

last updated: 2020-08-06
ProjectTERM - Programa de Doutoramento FCT :: publications list
TitleMelanin nanoparticles as a promising tool for biomedical applications – a review
Publication TypeReview Paper
Year of Publication2020
AuthorsCaldas M., Santos A. C., Rebelo R., Veiga F., Reis R. L., and Correlo V. M.
Abstract Text

Melanin is a biopolymer of easy and cheap availability that can be found among the living organisms and excels for its biocompatibility and biodegradability properties, along with scavenging abilities, metal chelation and electronic conductance. This biomaterial can act as a nanocarrier or agent itself to be used in diverse biomedical applications, such as imaging, controlled drug release, bioengineering and bioelectronics, antioxidant applications and theranostics.

In this review, the melanin source and structure, its physicochemical properties, melanin-like polymers as well as the differences among those will be elucidated. The focus will be the discussion of the current approaches that apply melanin nanoparticles (MNPs) and melanin-like nanoparticles (MLNPs) in the biomedical field, to which promising capabilities have been attributed, regarding optoelectronic, photoconductivity and photoacoustic. The use of these nanoparticles, in the last 10 years, in topics as drug delivery or theranostics will be detailed and the major achievements will be discussed. Overall, we anticipate that melanin can drive us toward a new paradigm in medical diagnostics and treatments, since applying melanin features possibly its use as a theranostics nanocarrier agent, not only for diagnostics, but also for photothermal therapy and controlled drug release through chemotherapy.

JournalActa Biomaterialia
Date Published2020-02-03
PublisherElsevier Inc
Keywordsbioengineering, Drug Delivery System, Imaging, melanin, Nanoparticle, theranostics
Peer reviewedyes

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