Carbon Nanotubes: Synthesis, Functionalization, Characterization, Toxicity Researches

Bircan Dinc, Ayhan Unlu, Muhammet Bektas


Carbon nanotubes (CNTs), with their superior physical and chemical properties, high durability and low weight, have become the focus of industry and medical applications in recent years. With the functionalization of CNTs, the biocompatibility can be increased, and different types of molecules can be attached to their large surface areas. The needle-like structure of CNTs makes it easy to enter the cell by crossing biological barriers, to transport drugs and molecules. Arc discharge, laser ablation and chemical vapor deposition are the synthesis methods of CNTs. According to the number of wrapped graphene sheets, there are two different CNTs: single wall and multi wall carbon nanotubes. Chemical and physical structure of pristine and functionalized CNTs are evaluated through many techniques but mostly by using Raman Spectroscopy, Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR) and by taking TEM and SEM images. Before treatment investigations of tumors and drug transportation in mice, toxicity researches have been carried out. Results of toxicity experiments vary according to the case studies, length, synthesis method; hazardous and harmless samples have been reported. Studies have been carried out on the adsorbing of proteins or molecules onto CNTs or wrapping them around, internalization mechanism of pristine or molecule bounded CNTs to the cell. Determination CNTs exceptional physical, chemical, optical and electrical properties; toxicity studies, loading and carrying biomolecules at their surface have been provided necessary knowledge to make them an ideal material for particular intracellular biosensing applications and development of biosensors. This review focuses on the properties, production and the most used characterization methods and toxicity studies of CNTs.

Key Words: Carbon Nanotubes, Synthesis, Functionalization, Characterization, Toxicity

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ISSN (online) 2422-8702