Nanotechnology and aptamers: applications in drug delivery

Trends Biotechnol. 2008 Aug;26(8):442-9. doi: 10.1016/j.tibtech.2008.04.006. Epub 2008 Jun 19.


Nucleic acid ligands, also known as aptamers, are a class of macromolecules that are being used in several novel nanobiomedical applications. Aptamers are characterized by high affinity and specificity for their target, a versatile selection process, ease of chemical synthesis and a small physical size, which collectively make them attractive molecules for targeting diseases or as therapeutics. These properties will enable aptamers to facilitate innovative new nanotechnologies with applications in medicine. In this review, we will highlight recent developments in using aptamers in nanotechnology solutions for treating and diagnosing disease.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aptamers, Nucleotide / chemistry*
  • Aptamers, Nucleotide / therapeutic use
  • Drug Delivery Systems*
  • Nanoparticles / chemistry*
  • Nanotechnology / methods
  • Nucleic Acid Conformation
  • Oligonucleotides / chemistry*
  • Oligonucleotides / therapeutic use
  • SELEX Aptamer Technique / methods


  • Aptamers, Nucleotide
  • Oligonucleotides