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Title: Bioapplications of carbon nanotubes and carbon nanotube assemblies
Author: Brunner, Eric W.
ISNI:       0000 0004 2691 2374
Awarding Body: University of Surrey
Current Institution: University of Surrey
Date of Award: 2010
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As new materials are discovered, their potential and applications are investigated widely across the various scientific disciplines for general or highly specialized applications. While new nanomaterials such as carbon nanotubes have received the greatest interest for electronics, optics, and structural composites, their applications have also been explored for biological applications such as sensing, selective cell destruction, cellular growth scaffolds, and intracellular delivery of bioactive cargos. Carbon nanotubes are unique materials particularly suited for these applications as they possess characteristic optical and electronic properties in conjunction with large aspect ratios and massive surface areas. The work of this thesis explores the use of carbon nanotubes for cellular growth scaffolds in Chapters 3, tailoring the various properties of these scaffolds in Chapter 4, and their cellular internalization and intracellular locations in Chapter 5. The aim of Chapters 3 and 4 are to create a surface that mimics a cell's natural environment by varying characteristics such as roughness, pore size distribution, wettability, and chemical functionalization of the carbon nanotubes surface. Such variations can have beneficial, detrimental or abnormal effects on the tested cell line as a cell's natural environment within the body consists of a three dimensional mesh of extracellular matrix proteins which is not at all replicated by the commonly used polystyrene tissue culture flask. Carbon nanotubes possess diameters ranging from 0.7 to several nanometers and lengths that can range up to several microns thereby allowing certain types of CNTs to scale with these extracellular matrix proteins and thus impart a nanoscale textured topology that more closely resembles a cell's in vivo environment. Additionally, the replacement of extracted extracellular matrix proteins for coating cellular growth surfaces with synthetic carbon nanotubes eliminates any risk of pathogen contamination and batch-to-batch variability of biological specimens. Fundamental understanding of the interactions between carbon nanotube surfaces and adhered cell cultures will provide a foundation for carbon nanotube applications in 3- dimensional cellular growth scaffolds and tissue implantation devices. Chapter 5 explores the interactions between designed peptides with slight variations in their amino acid sequences and the consequential effects of these peptide interactions with carbon nanotubes for cellular internalization and intracellular location. The efficacy of pharmaceutical drugs and the cellular responses to biomacromolecules depends heavily upon their abilities to transverse the cellular plasma membranes, and exploring the interactions with designed biomolecules such as synthetic peptides provides simple methods for increasing the cellular internalization of carbon nanotubes and altering the intracellular delivery location. The results and methods investigated within these chapters can then be easily applied to other carbon nanotube transporter schemes.,
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available