Highlights ► Extracellular matrix scaffolds provide a bioactive platform for tissue regeneration. ► Osteochondral defect repair remains a great orthopedic and socioeconomic burden. ► We describe cartilage and bone decellularization and possible future directions. ► Extracellular matrix scaffolds hold great promise for osteochondral defect repair.
Highlights ► Metabolic engineering progresses in fermentation of sugars from seaweed biomass. ► Seaweed properties, cultivation, and potential to be feedstocks for biofuels. ► Major steps in converting seaweed biomass to biofuels and the related challenges.
Pathogenic microorganisms are causative agents of various infectious diseases that are becoming increasingly serious worldwide. For the successful treatment of pathogenic infection, the rapid and accurate detection of multiple pathogenic microorganisms is of great importance in all areas related to health and safety. Among various sensor systems, optical biosensors allow easy-to-use, rapid, portable, multiplexed, and cost-effective diagnosis. Here, we review current trends and advances in pathogen-diagnostic optical biosensors. The technological and methodological approaches underlying diverse optical-sensing platforms and methods for detecting pathogenic microorganisms are reviewed, together with the strengths and drawbacks of each technique. Finally, challenges in developing efficient optical biosensor systems and future perspectives are discussed.
Multiplexed point-of-care testing (xPOCT), which is simultaneous on-site detection of different analytes from a single specimen, has recently gained increasing importance for clinical diagnostics, with emerging applications in resource-limited settings (such as in the developing world, in doctors’ offices, or directly at home). Nevertheless, only single-analyte approaches are typically considered as the major paradigm in many reviews of point-of-care testing. Here, we comprehensively review the present diagnostic systems and techniques for xPOCT applications. Different multiplexing technologies (e.g., bead- or array-based systems) are considered along with their detection methods (e.g., electrochemical or optical). We also address the unmet needs and challenges of xPOCT. Finally, we critically summarize the in-field applicability and the future perspectives of the presented approaches.
Nucleic acid testing for infectious diseases at the point of care is beginning to enter clinical practice in developed and developing countries; especially for applications requiring fast turnaround times, and in settings where a centralized laboratory approach faces limitations. Current systems for clinical diagnostic applications are mainly PCR-based, can only be used in hospitals, and are still relatively complex and expensive. Integrating sample preparation with nucleic acid amplification and detection in a cost-effective, robust, and user-friendly format remains challenging. This review describes recent technical advances that might be able to address these limitations, with a focus on isothermal nucleic acid amplification methods. It briefly discusses selected applications related to the diagnosis and management of tuberculosis, HIV, and perinatal and nosocomial infections.
Despite the advances in biomedical applications of nanoparticle (NP) and numerous publications, few NPs have made it to clinical trials and even fewer have reached clinical practice. This wide gap between bench discoveries and clinical applications is mainly because of our limited understanding of the biological identity of NPs. In physiological environments, NPs are coated by a ‘protein corona’ (PC), critically affecting physiological and therapeutic responses. To date, nearly all studies attempting to characterize the PC have been conducted in vitro . Here, we review recent advances in our understanding of the in vivo PC. We also discuss recent developments of quantitative models to predict biological interactions and how they offer new opportunities for the clinical translation of NPs.
3D bioprinting has been developed to effectively and rapidly pattern living cells and biomaterials, aiming to create complex bioconstructs. However, placing biocompatible materials or cells into direct contact via bioprinting is necessary but insufficient for creating these constructs. Therefore, ‘4D bioprinting’ has emerged recently, where ‘time’ is integrated with 3D bioprinting as the fourth dimension, and the printed objects can change their shapes or functionalities when an external stimulus is imposed or when cell fusion or postprinting self-assembly occurs. In this review, we highlight recent developments in 4D bioprinting technology. Additionally, we review the uses of 4D bioprinting in tissue engineering and drug delivery. Finally, we discuss the major roadblocks to this approach, together with possible solutions, to provide future perspectives on this technology.
Highlights ► Assays to quantify cancer biomarkers with high sensitivity and low sample volumes. ► Imaging of cancer cells, tissues, and small animals with multiplexed capabilities. ► Multimodal SERS probes and their potential for clinical translation.
Highlights • We review four promising biotechnological applications of electroporation. • Reversible electroporation is an efficient method for genetic transformation of microorganisms. • Irreversible electroporation allows the inactivation of microbes and the extraction of biomolecules. • Water release due to electroporation increases the efficiency of biomass drying.
Cytochrome P450 monooxygenases (P450s) are versatile biocatalysts that catalyze the regio- and stereospeciﬁc oxidation of non-activated hydrocarbons under mild conditions, which is a challenging task for chemical catalysts. Over the past decade impressive advances have been achieved via protein engineering with regard to activity, stability and specificity of P450s. In addition, a large pool of newly annotated P450s has attracted much attention as a source for novel biocatalysts for oxidation. In this review we give a short up-to-date overview of recent results on P450 engineering for technical applications including aspects of whole-cell biocatalysis with engineered recombinant enzymes. Furthermore, we focus on recently identified P450s with novel biotechnologically relevant properties.
Highlights • Biopolymeric materials are preferred for medical applications. • Biopolymeric materials lack the desired mechanical properties and aqueous stability. • Crosslinking is carried out to improve properties but is potentially cytotoxic. • Green chemicals and new technologies for crosslinking need to be developed.
Renewable biofuels are needed to displace petroleum-derived transport fuels, which contribute to global warming and are of limited availability. Biodiesel and bioethanol are the two potential renewable fuels that have attracted the most attention. As demonstrated here, biodiesel and bioethanol produced from agricultural crops using existing methods cannot sustainably replace fossil-based transport fuels, but there is an alternative. Biodiesel from microalgae seems to be the only renewable biofuel that has the potential to completely displace petroleum-derived transport fuels without adversely affecting supply of food and other crop products. Most productive oil crops, such as oil palm, do not come close to microalgae in being able to sustainably provide the necessary amounts of biodiesel. Similarly, bioethanol from sugarcane is no match for microalgal biodiesel.
Photodynamic therapy (PDT) in cancer treatment involves the uptake of a photosensitizer by cancer tissue followed by photoirradiation. The use of nanoparticles as carriers of photosensitizers is a very promising approach because these nanomaterials can satisfy all the requirements for an ideal PDT agent. This review describes and compares the different individual types of nanoparticles that are currently in use for PDT applications. Recent advances in the use of nanoparticles, including inorganic oxide-, metallic-, ceramic-, and biodegradable polymer-based nanomaterials as carriers of photosensitizing agents, are highlighted. We describe the nanoparticles in terms of stability, photocytotoxic efficiency, biodistribution and therapeutic efficiency. Finally, we summarize exciting new results concerning the improvement of the photophysical properties of nanoparticles by means of biphotonic absorption and upconversion.
Recently, there has been growing interest in applying bioprinting techniques to stem cell research. Several bioprinting methods have been developed utilizing acoustics, piezoelectricity, and lasers to deposit living cells onto receiving substrates. Using these technologies, spatially defined gradients of immobilized biomolecules can be engineered to direct stem cell differentiation into multiple subpopulations of different lineages. Stem cells can also be patterned in a high-throughput manner onto flexible implementation patches for tissue regeneration or onto substrates with the goal of accessing encapsulated stem cells of interest for genomic analysis. Here, we review recent achievements with bioprinting technologies in stem cell research, and identify future challenges and potential applications including tissue engineering and regenerative medicine, wound healing, and genomics.
Microfluidic devices offer automation and high-throughput screening, and operate at low volumes of consumables. Although microfluidics has the potential to reduce turnaround times and costs for analytical devices, particularly in medical, veterinary, and environmental sciences, this enabling technology has had limited diffusion into consumer products. This article analyzes the microfluidics market, identifies issues, and highlights successful commercialization strategies. Addressing niche markets and establishing compatibility with existing workflows will accelerate market penetration.
Our societies generate increasing volumes of organic wastes. Considering that we also need alternatives to oil, an opportunity exists to extract liquid fuels or even industrial solvents from these abundant wastes. Anaerobic undefined mixed cultures can handle the complexity and variability of organic wastes, which produces carboxylates that can be efficiently converted to useful bioproducts. However, to date, barriers, such as inefficient liquid product separation and persistence of methanogens, have prevented the production of bioproducts other than methane. Here, we discuss combinations of biological and chemical pathways that comprise the ‘carboxylate platform’, which is used to convert waste to bioproducts. To develop the carboxylate platform into an important system within biorefineries, we must understand the kinetic and thermodynamic possibilities of anaerobic pathways, understand the ecological principles underlying pathway alternatives, and develop superior separation technologies.
The topical use of platelet concentrates is recent and its efficiency remains controversial. Several techniques for platelet concentrates are available; however, their applications have been confusing because each method leads to a different product with different biology and potential uses. Here, we present classification of the different platelet concentrates into four categories, depending on their leucocyte and fibrin content: pure platelet-rich plasma (P-PRP), such as cell separator PRP, Vivostat PRF or Anitua's PRGF; leucocyte- and platelet-rich plasma (L-PRP), such as Curasan, Regen, Plateltex, SmartPReP, PCCS, Magellan or GPS PRP; pure plaletet-rich fibrin (P-PRF), such as Fibrinet; and leucocyte- and platelet-rich fibrin (L-PRF), such as Choukroun's PRF. This classification should help to elucidate successes and failures that have occurred so far, as well as providing an objective approach for the further development of these techniques.
Highlights • New production platforms for VHH and VHH-Fc antibodies were recently explored. • VHHs have distinct properties and often outperform conventional antibodies. • Several VHHs for protein purification and localisation are commercially available.
Biofabrication holds the potential to generate constructs that more closely recapitulate the complexity and heterogeneity of tissues and organs than do currently available regenerative medicine therapies. Such constructs can be applied for tissue regeneration or as 3D models. Biofabrication is maturing and growing, and scientists with different backgrounds are joining this field, underscoring the need for unity regarding the use of terminology. We therefore believe that there is a compelling need to clarify the relationship between the different concepts, technologies, and descriptions of biofabrication that are often used interchangeably or inconsistently in the current literature. Our objective is to provide a guide to the terminology for different technologies in the field which may serve as a reference for the biofabrication community. Biofabrication holds great potential in the fields of regenerative medicine and physiological 3D models by allowing the manufacture of complex tissue constructs with a higher degree of biomimicry to native tissues than do current biomedical solutions. As the number of biofabrication technologies being developed continues to expand, it is of paramount importance to adopt a concerted terminology framework and avoid generalizations. The ratio between the spatial resolution and the timescale of manufacture could be considered as a reliable measure to aid in the selection of an appropriate biofabrication technology for a desired application.
Highlights • Ligand-targeted-liposomes (LTLs) enhance tumor targeting and intracellular uptake. • However, LTL efficacy is hindered by several secondary biological effects. • Further study will demonstrate how each LTL design element influences therapeutic outcome. • Preclinical LTLs show simultaneous stealth, targeting, and controlled drug-release functionalities.