Researchers from the Tohoku Univerisity, Japan, and Christian Albrechts College Kiel, Germany, critically assessment the usage of surfactant-coated nanoparticles within the fields of nanomedicine and meals nanotechnology. The assessment, which was just lately printed within the International Journal of Nanomedicine, additionally discusses the present progress and challenges related to surfactant-coated nanoparticle expertise.
Examine: A Critical Review of the Use of Surfactant-Coated Nanoparticles in Nanomedicine and Food Nanotechnology. Picture Credit score: Kateryna Kon / Shutterstock.com
Introduction to surfactants
Surfactants are long-chain amphiphilic compounds that encompass each hydrophobic and hydrophilic teams of their chemical construction. These compounds may be labeled based on the attribute of the hydrophilic group, which incorporates 4 distinct subtypes. These embody cationic, anionic, zwitterionic, and nonionic surfactants.
The properties of surfactants typically rely on the hydrophilic-hydrophobic steadiness (HLB), which is a parameter that signifies the surfactant’s affinity for water and oil. The important packing parameter (CPP), which is a parameter that predicts the surfactant’s self-assembly, additionally largely determines the structural traits of the surfactant.
Whereas cationic surfactants are thought of essentially the most poisonous kind of surfactant, nonionic surfactants are thought of to be the least poisonous. In consequence, nonionic surfactants are utilized in a variety of healthcare, beauty, and meals merchandise. Along with the low toxicity profile of nonionic surfactants, these compounds are additionally related to low manufacturing prices, excessive stability, and amphiphilic nature.
The lowered toxicity of nonionic surfactants is basically because of their hydrophilic teams that don’t ionize in aqueous options. In consequence, the micelle focus of nonionic surfactants is commonly a lot decrease as in comparison with ionic surfactants, thus decreasing their toxicity profile.
The floor construction of nanoparticles typically determines their dispersity in water and aggregation dynamics. Functionalizing the natural or inorganic nanoparticle floor with surfactants stabilizes them, thus growing their potential to disperse in water and velocity of aggregation. These nanoparticles are known as “surfactant-coated nanoparticles.”
Surfactant-coated nanoparticles in nanomedicine
Among the widespread methods by which natural nanoparticles are utilized in nanomedicine are for the encapsulation of anticancer medicine, genes, and proteins for focused supply. The selective supply of natural nanoparticles will increase the therapeutic efficacy of medicine whereas concurrently decreasing undesirable uncomfortable side effects and defending the encapsulated drug from untimely degradation.
Throughout the area of nanomedicine, surfactants are sometimes used to boost the performance of nanoparticles. Surfactants have been extensively used to coat natural nanoparticles which are used for illness therapy functions.
The commonest surfactant that’s used to arrange poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) nanoparticles is polyvinyl alcohol (PVA). Nevertheless, different surfactants which have been used to coat natural nanoparticles for biomedical functions embody sodium taurocholate and sodium cholate (SC).
Surfactants may also be used inside nanomedicine to vary the cost of the nanoparticle floor to be able to improve their intracellular localization. Extra particularly, cationic charged nanoparticles, as in comparison with anionic and nonionic charged nanoparticles, typically exhibit a better mobile uptake due the electrostatic attraction that arises between the nanoparticles and the negatively charged floor of cells. Some cationic surfactants which have been used to coat nanoparticles for this objective embody cetyltrimethylammonium bromide (CTAB) and didodecyldimethylammonium bromide (DDAB).
Regardless of their benefits for mobile uptake, cationic charged nanoparticles usually tend to alter the integrity of the cell membrane and trigger harm to organelles together with the mitochondria and lysosomes. In an effort to beat the doubtless poisonous results of those surfactants, nonionic surfactant-coated nanoparticles are related to lowered uncomfortable side effects.
Taken collectively, essentially the most extensively used surfactant that’s used to coat nanoparticles for biomedical functions is polyethylene glycol (PEG). Regardless of its benefits, there are issues concerning the accelerated blood clearance (ABC) phenomenon, which is an immune response that removes PEG-modified nanoparticles from the physique. Analysis is at present underway to boost the capabilities of the PEG-modified nanoparticles whereas concurrently weakening the ABC phenomenon.
Surfactant-coated nanoparticles in meals nanotechnology
The applying of nanotechnology into the meals business has considerably elevated over the previous a number of years on account of its utility in bettering the properties of current meals merchandise. For instance, the encapsulation of meals substances into nanoparticles has prolonged the shelf life of those merchandise whereas concurrently decreasing their degradation by the digestive system.
Though some nanoparticles are in a position to overcome the tough atmosphere of the digestive tract, which incorporates numerous digestive enzymes and the extremely acidic abdomen, there’s nonetheless room for enchancment to make sure the whole absorption of encapsulated vitamins. To this finish, surfactant-coated nanoparticles have been developed to not solely overcome a few of the aforementioned environmental challenges of the gastrointestinal tract but additionally penetrate the mucus barrier throughout the small intestines to be able to make sure the absorption of their contents by intestinal cells.
Meals nanosensing is one other utility of nanoparticles throughout the meals business, which makes use of inorganic nanoparticles to detect a variety of traits in meals merchandise. Extra particularly, nanoparticles are used to sense the presence of adulterants, synthetic substances, bacterial toxins and different pathogens. Taken collectively, these nanoparticles are necessary for making certain the protection and high quality of meals merchandise earlier than they attain the patron.
Like many different facets of meals nanotechnology, surfactants are additionally utilized in meals nanosensing to additional improve the properties of those nanoparticles. Magnetite nanoparticles coated with cationic surfactants, for instance, are related to better limits of detection. Surfactants have additionally been utilized to the floor of silver nanoparticles, that are essentially the most extensively used kind of nanoparticles within the meals business, to stop meals merchandise from dehydration and microbial spoilage.
The digestive levels after oral administration and the mechanisms of in vivo uptake of surfactant-coated nanoparticles by the small gut. Notes: (A-1) Transcellular route, by the M cells. (A-2) Transcellular route, by the enterocyte. (B) Paracellular route. (C) Persorption route.
As nanotechnology continues to change into a extra widespread element of each the medical and meals industries, surfactants will inevitably play an necessary position in enhancing the capabilities of nanoparticles. Whereas additional work should be performed to be able to guarantee the protection of each nanoparticles and the surfactants which are used to coat their surfaces, the mixture of those two applied sciences has a promising future.