Nanotechnology applications in rheumatology

Rheumatol Int. 2022 Nov;42(11):1883-1891. doi: 10.1007/s00296-022-05141-0. Epub 2022 May 19.


Nanomedicine (NM) is the medical use of nanotechnology (NT). NT is the study and control of nanoscale structures (between approximately 1 and 100 nm). Nanomaterials are created by manipulating atoms and molecules at the nanoscale, resulting in novel physical and chemical properties. With its targeted tissue delivery capabilities, NT has enabled molecular modulation of the immune response and underlying inflammatory responses in individuals with rheumatic diseases (RD). NM has enabled targeted drug delivery, reduced adverse effects on non-target organs, raised drug concentration in synovial tissue, and slowed the progression of immune-mediated RD such as rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). Thus, NM has evolved in rheumatology prevention, diagnosis, and therapy. Animal models have proven superior outcomes to conventional techniques of treating specific illnesses. Nanodiamond (ND) immunomodulatory applications have been proposed as an alternative to traditional nanoparticles in the diagnosis and treatment of RA due to their small size and ability to be removed from the body without causing harm to the patient's organs, such as the liver. However, human clinical NM needs more research. We conducted a literature review to assess the present role of NM in clinical rheumatology, describing its current and future applications in the diagnosis and treatment of rheumatic diseases.

Keywords: Drug delivery; Nanomedicine; Nanotechnology; Rheumatic diseases; Rheumatology; Targeted delivery.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid* / diagnosis
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid* / drug therapy
  • Humans
  • Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic* / diagnosis
  • Nanodiamonds* / therapeutic use
  • Nanotechnology
  • Rheumatic Diseases* / diagnosis
  • Rheumatic Diseases* / drug therapy
  • Rheumatology*


  • Nanodiamonds