Cellular uptake and retention of nanoparticles: Insights on particle properties and interaction with cellular components

Robin Augustine, Anwarul Hasan, Rosita Primavera, Rudilyn Joyce Wilson, Avnesh S. Thakor, Bhavesh D. Kevadiya

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

166 Scopus citations


The utilization of nanomaterials in the biological and medical field is quickly progressing, particularly in areas where traditional diagnostics and treatment approaches have limited success. The success of nanomaterials in medical products such as biomedical implants, wound dressings and drug delivery systems rely upon their effective interaction between the extracellular matrix, cells, and intracellular components. Upon contact with mammalian cells, nanoparticles (NPs) begin to interact with the extracellular matrix, cell membrane, cytoplasmic proteins, nucleus, and other cellular organelles, which result in nanoparticle internalization and subsequent cellular responses. Such responses elicited by the mammalian cells as a result of the cell-nanomaterials interactions, both at the cellular and molecular level, are mainly determined by the morphological, chemical, and surface characteristics of the nanomaterials themselves. This review provides an overview of how such different attributes, such as chemical nature, size, shape, surface charge, topography, stiffness, and functional features of nanomaterials, influence the cell-nanomaterials interactions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number101692
JournalMaterials Today Communications
StatePublished - Dec 2020


  • Cell-nanoparticle interaction
  • charge
  • functional groups
  • mammalian cells
  • nanomaterials
  • shape
  • size

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Materials Science
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Materials Chemistry


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