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Bio-Nano-Magnetic Materials for Localized Mechanochemical Stimulation of Cell Growth and Death



Devrim Kilinc, Cindi L. Dennis, Gil U. Lee


Magnetic nanoparticles are promising new tools for therapeutic applications, such as magnetic nanoparticle hyperthermia therapy and target drug delivery. Recent in vitro studies demonstrated that force application with magnetic tweezers can also affect cell fate, suggesting a therapeutic potential for magnetically-modulated mechanical stimulation. In this article, the magnetic properties of nanoparticles that induce physical responses and the subtle responses that result from mechanically-induced membrane damage and/or intracellular signaling are evaluated. Magnetic particles with various physical, geometric, and magnetic properties and specific functionalization can now be used to apply force to specific regions of cells, which permit the modulation of cellular behavior through the use of spatially and time controlled magnetic fields. On one end, mechanochemical stimulation has been used to direct the outgrowth on neuronal growth cones, indicating a therapeutic potential for neural repair. On the other end, it has been used to kill cancer cells that preferentially express specific receptors. Advances made in the synthesis and characterization of magnetic nanomaterials and a better understanding of cellular mechanotransduction mechanisms may support the translation of mechanochemical stimulation into the clinic as an emerging therapeutic approach.
Advanced Materials


magnetic nanoparticles, nanorods, cancer therapy, magnetic tweezers, magnetic hyperthermia


Kilinc, D. , Dennis, C. and Lee, G. (2016), Bio-Nano-Magnetic Materials for Localized Mechanochemical Stimulation of Cell Growth and Death, Advanced Materials (Accessed June 22, 2024)


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Created July 19, 2016, Updated October 12, 2021