Metal-organic frameworks: a future toolbox for biomedicine?


The present review focuses on the use of Metal-Organic Frameworks, (MOFs) highlighting the most recent developments in the biological field. This review assesses, in the first instance, the cytotoxicity of MOFs (particularly those used for various biological applications described throughout this review), and shows that for standard MOFs based on metals already present in active molecules of the human body, toxicity is not a significant limitation. Here we underline the MIL-, UiO- and ZIF-series of MOFs which remain until now the most used materials in drug delivery of active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs), such as antitumourals or retroviral drugs (with high loading and slow release time). Porosity remains undoubtedly the most studied key property of MOFs, that allows the protection of active biomolecules such as enzymes or the development of antimicrobial materials. Emphasis is given on the usage of MOFs for the detection of biomarkers in biological fluids such as urine and blood (detection of cystinuria, identification of penicillin anaphylaxis, urea, bilirubin, biomarkers related to human intoxication, tumoural indicators, among several others), for which a number of simple devices (such as paper strips) were developed. Despite the remarkable and promising results presented in recent years, the literature remains scarce (mostly non-existent) in terms of direct comparison of these novel technologies with the solutions presently available in the market. Action on this side may make the difference in the next years concerning research on MOFs, to see if some of these materials may reach the end-user as new and more efficient treatments or detection approaches.






Mendes, RF; Figueira, F; Leite, JP; Gales, L; Paz, FAA

nossos autores


Agencies and projects; This work was developed within the scope of the project CICECOAveiro Institute ofMaterials, UIDB/50011/2020 & UIDP/50011/2020, financed by national funds through the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology/MCTES, and PTDC/QUI-QFI/29914/2017, financed by national funds through the FCT/MCTES. The work was also supported by UID/MULTI/04378/2019 and UID/QUI/00081 with funding from FCT/MCTES through national funds.; This work was funded by (i) FEDER -Fundo Europeu de Desenvolvimento Regional funds through the COMPETE 2020 - Operational Programme for Competitiveness and Internationalisation (POCI), Portugal 2020, and by Portuguese funds through FCT/MCTES in the framework of project POCI-01-0145-FEDER-007274 (Institute for Research and Innovation in Health Sciences), and by (ii) FEDER through the Norte Portugal Regional Operational Programme (NORTE 2020), under the PORTUGAL 2020 Partnership Agreement in the framework of Projects Norte-01-0145-FEDER-000008.; Individual grants and scholarships; FCT is also gratefully acknowledged for the Junior Research Position CEECIND/00553/2017 (to RFM) and the PhD grant SFRH/BD/129921/2017 (to JPL). The research contract of FF (REF-168-89-ARH/2018) is funded by national funds (OE), through FCT, in the scope of the framework contract foreseen in No. 4, 5 and 6 of article 23 of the Decree-Law 57/2016, of August 29, changed by Law 57/2017, of July 19.

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