Functional nanoparticles in targeting glioma diagnosis and therapies

J Nanosci Nanotechnol. 2014 Jan;14(1):415-32. doi: 10.1166/jnn.2014.8757.


Successful therapy and diagnosis of glioma is one of the biggest challenges in the biomedical fields. The incidence is growing gradually around the world. Annually, there are approximately 13,000 cases of glioblastoma multiforme diagnosed with historical 1-year and 5-year survival rates of 29.3% and 3.3%, respectively. The prognosis of patients with malignant glioma remains dismal. Due to its highly proliferative, infiltrative, and invasive property, development of effective preventative strategies to control the gliomas is in high demand. Meanwhile, the efficiency of drug delivery to glioma remains low owing to the non-specific, non-targeted nature of anti-tumor agents. Furthermore, the presence of the blood brain barrier and blood brain tumor barrier is another obstacle for gliomas treatments. Nanotechnology has brought a paradigm shift in the diagnosis and treatment of glioma. This review discusses the potential of various nanoparticles in the diagnosis of gliomas using some metal oxide, and in the therapy of gliomas including receptor-mediated, magnetic directing, and cell-mediated drug delivery systems. In this review, some physical techniques combined with nanoparticles (NPs) such as ultrasound therapy, thermochemotherapy, photodynamic therapy, and fluorescent magnetic NPs have also been summarized.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Brain Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Brain Neoplasms / therapy*
  • Contrast Media / chemical synthesis
  • Glioma / diagnosis*
  • Glioma / therapy*
  • Humans
  • Molecular Imaging / methods*
  • Molecular Targeted Therapy / methods
  • Nanocapsules / chemistry
  • Nanocapsules / therapeutic use*


  • Contrast Media
  • Nanocapsules