Electrospun magnetoactive fibrous nanocomposites: Fabrication and applications in biomedicine
PublisherNova Science Publishers, Inc.
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Materials capable of responding to external stimuli including pH, temperature, magnetic and electric field, undergoing conformational changes are considered to be one of the most exciting and emerging classes of advanced materials receiving considerable scientific interest especially in the biomedical field. Stimuli-responsive polymers in the form of micro- or nanofibers have received great attention during the last 10 years and have been exploited in a diverse range of biomedical applications such as drug delivery, tissue engineering, bioseparation and biosensing. One of the most popular and versatile fiber fabrication methods used for the production of fibers is electrospinning. Its simplicity, cost-effectiveness and applicability not only to pristine synthetic and natural polymers but also to composites, enables the development of polymer-based fibrous nanocomposites via the combination of polymers with inorganic nanofillers. Among such nanoadditives, magnetic nanoparticles capable of interacting with an externally applied magnetic field, are particularly attractive owing to their potential biomedical applications including magnetically-triggered drug delivery, magnetic cell seeding, magnetic bioseparation, hyperthermia cancer treatment and contrast enhancement in magnetic resonance imaging. In this chapter, an introductory section on electrospinning and on different parameters influencing this process is initially provided. The different fabrication routes for generating electrospun magnetoactive polymer-based (nano)fibrous materials are briefly discussed and finally the applicability of these materials in the biomedical field including tissue engineering, drug delivery, hypethermia treatment and biosensing is reviewed. © 2014 by Nova Science Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved.