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Applications of Aptamer-Conjugated Nanomaterials for Targeted Cancer Therapy

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Aptamer is a new-type of specific recognition molecule and is emerging as a promising therapeutic agent. The greatest advantage of aptamers is their high binding affinity and specificity towards the target. The toxicity of anticancer drugs to surrounding healthy tissues limits their clinical applications. However, nanomaterials for drug carriers can considerably improve drug efficacy while reducing toxicity, because they accumulate and release drugs at the lesion without affecting healthy tissues. As drug carriers, aptamer-conjugated nanomaterials can enhance active targeting and then release the drug into the targeted cancer cells effectively. Therefore, aptamer-conjugated nanomaterials for targeted cancer therapy constitute an evolving treatment approach with considerable potential to enhance the efficacy of cancer therapy via the delivery of therapeutic agents specific to and into the targeted tumor cells. In this paper, various aptamer-conjugated nanomaterials such as gold nanoparticles, magnetic nanoparticles, silica nanoparticles, carbon nanotubes, poly D,L-lactic-co-glycolic acid, and quantum dots for targeted cancer therapy, are reviewed and their prospect as therapeutic agents is evaluated.
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Document Type: Review Article

Publication date: March 1, 2018

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  • Nanoscience and Nanotechnology Letters (NNL) is a multidisciplinary peer-reviewed journal consolidating nanoscale research activities in all disciplines of science, engineering and medicine into a single and unique reference source. NNL provides the means for scientists, engineers, medical experts and technocrats to publish original short research articles as communications/letters of important new scientific and technological findings, encompassing the fundamental and applied research in all disciplines of the physical sciences, engineering and medicine.
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