Carbohydrate-Nanoparticle Conjugates

Carbohydrate-nanoparticle conjugates with well-defined structures were successfully synthesized using carbohydrate-based templates with the help of precise and controllable nanotechnology. With rich experience in nanomaterial modification, CD Bioparticles provides customers with a full range of carbohydrate-nanoparticle conjugation strategies. We can tailor the biofunctionalization services of different carbohydrate molecules according to the research goals.

Introduction to Carbohydrate-Nanoparticle Conjugates

Carbohydrates have attracted extensive attention in the fields of biomedicine and materials due to their unique biocompatibility, biodegradability, and multifunctionality. Among them, the fusion of functional nanoparticles and carbohydrates not only effectively improves the performance, but also expands the related application fields. By introducing monosaccharides or oligosaccharides into nanoparticle polymer substrates, well-defined carbohydrate-polymer complexes can be prepared to enhance the performance of bioconjugates. Currently, controlled radical polymerization technology is mainly used to construct sugar-based polymers. Among them, carbohydrates including cellulose, chitosan, pullulan, dextran, starch, and hyaluronic acid have also been modified by these polymerization methods to prepare functional bioconjugates that can be used in the fields of drugs and gene delivery. As one of the most abundant biomolecules in nature, carbohydrates have shown significant roles in the treatment of various human diseases. Among them, structural polysaccharides and heteropolysaccharides have a long history of application in pharmaceutical science and are used as immunomodulators, anti-tumor adjuvant drugs, and anti-inflammatory drugs. Furthermore, different types of polysaccharides are of great interest to researchers due to their diverse applications in nanotechnology. In terms of commercial applications, carbohydrate polymers have been used to generate controlled-release matrices, films, nanogels, hydrogels, microspheres, nanospheres, and nanostructured coatings to introduce attractive properties, including high stability, safety, low toxicity, hydrophilicity, biocompatibility and biodegradability.

Figure 1. Carbohydrate-coated nanoparticles recognized by cell surface receptors.Figure 1. Schematic drawing of nanoparticles coated with carbohydrates recognized by cell surface receptors.(Kim D, et al.; 2021)

The specific features of carbohydrate-nanoparticle conjugates include:

  • Enhanced targeting: Carbohydrates specifically interact with receptors or proteins on the cell surface. After combining carbohydrates with nanoparticles, these conjugates can be engineered to specifically target their effects on specific cell types or tissues. This has significant application value in targeted drug delivery and tissue-specific therapy.
  • Enhanced Solubility and Stability: Nanoparticles can improve the solubility and stability of carbohydrates, thus solving the difficulties that may be encountered in the preparation in aqueous solution.
  • Drug delivery: Carbohydrate-nanoparticle conjugates can be used as carriers for drug delivery. Nanoparticles are capable of encapsulating or binding therapeutic drugs, protecting them from breakdown and facilitating controlled release at the target area. Surface carbohydrates facilitate cell-specific uptake.
  • Cellular uptake and internalization: Carbohydrates are recognized by specific receptors on the cell surface. When these carbohydrates are bound to nanoparticles, they can enhance the uptake and internalization of nanoparticles in cells through receptor-mediated endocytosis. This helps deliver therapeutic drugs or imaging agents into cells.
  • Biocompatibility and reduced immunogenicity: Carbohydrates are naturally occurring biomolecules, and when properly selected, they can enhance the biocompatibility of nanoparticles, reducing the risk of immune response or potential toxicity.
  • Multiple functions: By combining carbohydrates with nanoparticles, the resulting complexes can have multiple functions. For example, they can be designed to simultaneously deliver drugs, target specific cells, and carry imaging agents, making them versatile tools for a variety of applications.
  • Sustained-release effect: Nanoparticles enable controlled and sustained release of attached carbohydrates or drugs. This property is of great value for achieving long-term therapeutic effects or tissue regeneration.
  • Surface modification: Carbohydrates can be used to tune the surface properties of nanoparticles to make them more suitable for interaction with biological systems. These include reducing non-specific interactions or promoting specific binding to cells.

Our Featured Services

  • Functionalization Services for Cellulosic Polymers

Graft polymerization provides a way to change the physical and chemical properties of cellulose and increase related functions. CD Bioparticles provides cellulose modification services

  • Functionalization Services of Polysaccharide Polymers

Polysaccharide biopolymers are natural carbon-based products amenable to various additional modifications. The development of polysaccharide nanomaterials for highly efficient basic structures has been extensively studied for the controlled release of therapeutic agents, especially in tumor-targeting vectors and other biomedical applications. CD Bioparticles' polymerization technology platform offers bioconjugation strategies which offer multiple advantages in preparing well-defined polymer grafts with simple reaction conditions, solvent Flexible selection, wide range of functional monomers, flexible structure.

  • Synthesis Services of Star-like Block Copolymers

CD Bioparticles is capable of synthesizing novel amphiphilic multi-armed star-shaped block copolymers using living polymerization and click chemistry. Star polymers can be used as unimolecular micelles for inorganic nanoparticle synthesis and drug and gene delivery.

The applications of carbohydrate-nanoparticle conjugates include:

  • Drug delivery and imaging: Carbohydrate-polymer conjugates have been used to deliver biologically active substances (drugs, dyes, proteins, genes, and nucleic acids, etc.). Various polysaccharides, such as chitosan, cyclodextrin, dextran, pullulan, alginate, and hyaluronic acid, have been used as biodegradable nanocarriers due to their low toxicity.
  • Tissue engineering: Carbohydrate-based materials are biocompatible and can promote cell adhesion, proliferation and differentiation. Therefore, carbohydrate-polymer complexes can be prepared as scaffold materials for supporting cell growth and tissue regeneration. These scaffolds can provide structural support and gradually degrade during tissue repair, while providing cells with the growth environment they need.
  • Bioadhesives: Tissue adhesives are used in wound closure, healing, drug delivery, medical device implantation, tissue engineering, and orthopedic applications. The biodegradability and compatibility of polysaccharides make them ideal raw materials for bioadhesives. For example, chitosan and oxidized polysaccharides have been widely used in the field of bioadhesives.

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  1. Funk F, et al.; Criticality of Surface Characteristics of Intravenous Iron-Carbohydrate Nanoparticle Complexes: Implications for Pharmacokinetics and Pharmacodynamics. Int J Mol Sci. 2022, 23(4):2140.
  2. Bi L, et al.; Carbohydrate nanoparticle-mediated colloidal assembly for prolonged efficacy of bacteriocin against food pathogen. Biotechnol Bioeng. 2011, 108(7):1529-36.
  3. Kim D, et al.; Elucidating Carbohydrate-Protein Interactions Using Nanoparticle-Based Approaches. Front Chem. 2021, 9:669969.
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