Cellot, 2021

2021 - 03/09/2021 Pediatr Res 92, 71–79 (2022).

Nanomedicine and graphene-based materials: advanced technologies for potential treatments of diseases in the developing nervous system.

Cellot G, Franceschi Biagioni A, Ballerini L.


The interest in graphene-based nanomaterials (GBNs) application in nanomedicine, in particular in neurology, steadily increased in the last decades. GBNs peculiar physical–chemical properties allow the design of innovative therapeutic tools able to manipulate biological structures with subcellular resolution. In this review, we report GBNs applications to the central nervous system (CNS) when these nanomaterials are engineered as potential therapeutics to treat brain pathologies, with a focus on those of the pediatric age. We revise the state-of-the art studies addressing the impact of GBNs in the CNS, showing that the design of GBNs with different dimensions and chemical compositions or the use of specific administration routes and doses can limit unwanted side effects, exploiting GBNs efficacy in therapeutic approaches. These features favor the development of GBNs-based multifunctional devices that may find applications in the field of precision medicine for the treatment of disorders in the developing CNS. In this framework, we address the suitability of GBNs to become successful therapeutic tools, such as drug nano-delivery vectors when being chemically decorated with pharmaceutical agents and/or other molecules to obtain a high specific targeting of the diseased area and to achieve a controlled release of active molecules.


  • The translational potential of graphene-based nanomaterials (GBNs) can be used for the design of novel therapeutic approaches to treat pathologies affecting the brain with a focus on the pediatric age.

  • GBNs can be chemically decorated with pharmaceutical agents and molecules to obtain a highly specific targeting of the diseased site and a controlled drug release.

  • The type of GBNs, the selected functionalization, the dose, and the way of administration are factors that should be considered to potentiate the therapeutic efficacy of GBNs, limiting possible side effects.

  • GBNs-based multifunctional devices might find applications in the precision medicine and theranostics fields.


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