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Critical Reviews™ in Therapeutic Drug Carrier Systems
Facteur d'impact: 2.9 Facteur d'impact sur 5 ans: 3.72 SJR: 0.736 SNIP: 0.551 CiteScore™: 2.43

ISSN Imprimer: 0743-4863
ISSN En ligne: 2162-660X

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Critical Reviews™ in Therapeutic Drug Carrier Systems

DOI: 10.1615/CritRevTherDrugCarrierSyst.2015012360
pages 461-502

Quantum Dots and their Potential Role in Cancer Theranostics

S. K. Tripathi
Centre of Advanced Study in Physics, Department of Physics, Panjab University, Chandigarh-160014, India
Gurvir Kaur
Centre of Advanced Study in Physics, Department of Physics, Panjab University, Chandigarh-160014, India
Rajneet Kaur Khurana
University Grants Commission Centre of Advanced Studies, University Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Panjab University, Chandigarh, India
Sonia Kapoor
University Institute of Engineering and Technology, Panjab University, Chandigarh-160014, India
Bhupinder Singh
University Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, UGC Centre of Advanced Studies, Panjab University, Chandigarh, India 160014; UGC Centre of Excellence in Applications of Nanomaterials, Nanoparticles and Nanocomposites (Biomedical Sciences), Panjab University, Chandigarh, India 160014


The emergence of cancer nanomedicine is the result of fruitful advances in the fields of nanotechnology, bioimaging, formulation development, and molecular biology. Quantum dots (QDs) are the luminescent nanocrystals (NCs) that provide a multifunctional platform for imaging the biosystems following controlled delivery of therapeutic drugs, proteins, peptides, oligonucleotides, and genes. These engineered fluorescent probes with integrated imaging and carrier functionalities have become excellent tools for molecular diagnostics and delivery of therapeutics molecules. Flexible surface chemistry, unique optical properties, high sensitivity, and multiplexing capabilities of QDs certainly make them a most promising tool for personalized medicine. This review focuses on state-of-art advances in synthesizing QDs and highlights the approaches used for functionalization of QDs with desired ligands for targeted carriage to specific sites. Discussed is the role of QDs in antitumor therapy through drug delivery and gene delivery and the recently emerged photodynamic therapy (PDT). We also endeavor to critically address the major impediments in the clinical development of these multifunctional nanoplatforms, with a special focus on plausible advancements for the near future.