Antimonene (AM) is a recently described two-dimensional (2D) elemental layered material. In this study, a novel photonic drug-delivery platform based on 2D PEGylated AM nanosheets (NSs) is developed. The platform's multiple advantages include: i) excellent photothermal properties, ii) high drug-loading capacity, iii) spatiotemporally controlled drug release triggered by near-infrared (NIR) light and moderate acidic pH, iv) superior accumulation at tumor sites, v) deep tumor penetration by both extrinsic stimuli (i.e., NIR light) and intrinsic stimuli (i.e., pH), vi) excellent multimodal-imaging properties, and vii) significant inhibition of tumor growth with no observable side effects and potential degradability, thus addressing several key limitations of cancer nanomedicines. The intracellular fate of the prepared NSs is also revealed for the first time, providing deep insights that improve cellular-level understanding of the nano-bio interactions of AM-based NSs and other emerging 2D nanomaterials. To the best of knowledge, this is the first report on 2D AM-based photonic drug-delivery platforms, possibly marking an exciting jumping-off point for research into the application of 2D AM nanomaterials in cancer theranostics.
Keywords: antimonene; cancer theranostics; drug delivery; nanomedicine; two-dimensional nanosheets.
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