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Anthony Singer, Eleni Markoutsa, Alya Limayem, Subhra Mohapatra and Shyam S. Mohapatra

Abstract

Biomedical Nanotechnology (BNT) has rapidly become a revolutionary force that is driving innovation in the medical field. BNT is a subclass of nanotechnology (NT), and often operates in cohort with other subclasses, such as mechanical or electrical NT for the development of diagnostic assays, therapeutic implants, nano-scale imaging systems, and medical machinery. BNT is generating solutions to many conventional challenges through the development of enhanced therapeutic delivery systems, diagnostic techniques, and theranostic therapies. Therapeutically, BNT has generated many novel nanocarriers (NCs) that each express specifically designed physiochemical properties that optimize their desired pharmacokinetic profile. NCs are also being integrated into nanoscale platforms that further enhance their delivery by controlling and prolonging their release profile. Nano-platforms are also proving to be highly efficient in tissue regeneration when combined with the appropriate growth factors. Regarding diagnostics, NCs are being designed to perform targeted delivery of luminescent tags and contrast agents that enhance the NC -aided imaging capabilities and resulting diagnostic accuracy of the presence of diseased cells. This technology has also been advancing the ability for surgeons to practice true precision surgical techniques. Incorporating therapeutic and diagnostic NC-components within a single NC can facilitate both functions, referred to as theranostics, which facilitates real-time in vivo tracking and observation of drug release events via enhanced imaging. Additionally, stimuli-responsive theranostic NCs are quickly developing as vectors for tumor ablation therapies by providing a model that facilitates the location of cancer cells for the application of an external stimulus. Overall, BNT is an interdisciplinary approach towards health care, and has the potential to significantly improve the quality of life for humanity by significantly decreasing the treatment burden for patients, and by providing non-invasive therapeutics that confer enhanced therapeutic efficiency and safety