Bio-Inspired Nanotechnology

Polymer Nanocomposite Technologies Designed for Biomedical Applications

Author(s): Praseetha P. Nair *

Pp: 41-55 (15)

DOI: 10.2174/9789815080179123010005

* (Excluding Mailing and Handling)


The combination of polymer composite technology and nanotechnology leads to the design of polymer nanocomposites. They represent a novel alternative class of materials to traditional composites with versatile properties which are suitable for biomedical applications. The addition of nanofillers to polymer composites enhances their mechanical and biological characteristics. The enhancement in various properties depends on the polymer matrix, filler, and matrix-filler interaction. The major issue faced in biomedical research during product development is the lack of biocompatibility and biodegradability. The primary factor that has to be considered for composite development is the proper choice of materials. There is a growing demand for the design of personalized medicine with the outbreak of many chronic ailments and genetic disorders. The properties of polymer nanocomposites can be customized for various biomedical applications. The characteristic features of supramolecular nanocomposites which act as smart materials with tuned properties can be exploited for tissue engineering, responsive drug and hormone delivery, regenerative medicine, bioimaging, ocular, dental and orthopedic applications. Many hybrid biopolymer composites which exhibit promising biomedical applications are developed by researchers. Their properties can be tailored for making biomedical devices also. This chapter highlights a brief but focused overview of biomedical applications of bio-based polymer nanocomposites, carbon-based polymer nanocomposites, metal-organic framework/polymer nanocomposites, shape memory polymer nanocomposites, hydrogels, self-healing polymer nanocomposites and stimuli responsive polymer nanocomposites.

Keywords: Biomedical applications, Carbon-based polymer nanocomposites, MOF/polymer composites, Polymer-nanocomposites, Shape memory polymers, Targeted drug delivery.

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