Will Nanotechnology Bring New Hope for Stem Cell Therapy?

Cells Tissues Organs. 2018;206(4-5):229-241. doi: 10.1159/000500517. Epub 2019 Jul 9.


The potential of stem cell therapy has been shown in preclinical trials for the treatment of damage and replacement of organs and degenerative diseases. After many years of research, its clinical application is limited. Currently there is not a single stem cell therapy product or procedure. Nanotechnology is an emerging field in medicine and has huge potential due to its unique characteristics such as its size, surface effects, tunnel effects, and quantum size effect. The importance of application of nanotechnology in stem cell technology and cell-based therapies has been recognized. In particular, the effects of nanotopography on stem cell differentiation, proliferation, and adhesion have become an area of intense research in tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. Despite the many opportunities that nanotechnology can create to change the fate of stem cell technology and cell therapies, it poses several risks since some nanomaterials are cytotoxic and can affect the differentiation program of stem cells and their viability. Here we review some of the advances and the prospects of nanotechnology in stem cell research and cell-based therapies and discuss the issues, obstacles, applications, and approaches with the aim of opening new avenues for further research.

Keywords: Cell-based therapies; Nanomaterial; Nanotechnology; Nanotopography; Stem cell.

Publication types

  • Review