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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Boron nitride nanotubes are noncytotoxic and can be functionalized for interaction with proteins and cells.

  • Author(s): Chen, Xing;
  • Wu, Peng;
  • Rousseas, Michael;
  • Okawa, David;
  • Gartner, Zev;
  • Zettl, Alex;
  • Bertozzi, Carolyn R
  • et al.

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We report the discovery that boron nitride nanotubes (BNNTs), isosteres of CNTs with unique physical properties, are inherently noncytotoxic. Furthermore, we developed a biomemetic coating strategy to interface BNNTs with proteins and cells. Finally, we showed that BNNTs can deliver DNA oligomers to the interior of cells with no apparent toxicity. This work suggests that BNNTs may be superior to CNTs for use as biological probes and in biomaterials.

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