SCIENTIA SINICA Vitae, Volume 49, Issue 9: 1109-1118(2019) https://doi.org/10.1360/SSV-2019-0151

Progress in the development of nitric oxide-releasing biomaterials and their biomedical applications

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  • ReceivedJul 22, 2019
  • AcceptedAug 7, 2019
  • PublishedSep 16, 2019


Nitric oxide (NO) is an essential signaling molecule that participates in various important physiological and pathological processes, such as angiogenesis, neuronal transmission, immunomodulation, and tumor growth. The multifunctional roles of NO in biological processes have substantially increased interest in research regarding effective strategies in delivering exogenous NO for biomedical applications. The development of various NO prodrugs, such as organic nitrates, diazeniumdiolates, S-nitrosothiols, furoxan nitrogen oxides, and metal-nitrosyls, continue to undergo innovative modifications to improve NO payload and to prolong NO release. However, the clinical application of these low-molecular-weight NO donors is limited due to problems associated with burst release and untargeted delivery. The tunable administration of NO by biomaterial-based carriers offers an attractive and efficient strategy to achieve a controlled and targeted delivery of NO to specialized tissues or organs. In this review, we summarize the progress made in the development of NO donors and NO delivery systems and highlight potential biomedical applications aiming to inspire new perspectives in the field of biomaterial-based NO delivery systems.

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  • Figure 1

    Paracrine effects of MSCs were enhanced by CS-NO. A: Illustration of the decomposition of CSeNO by enzyme catalysis. Proangiogenic effects were evaluated using CD31 immunostaining (B) and angiography (C). D: Schematic diagram depicts enhanced paracrine effects of MSCs[17,18]

  • Figure 2

    Target delivery of NO by EPT strategy. A: Schematic illustration of localized delivery of NO to the trabecular meshwork via the EPT strategy. B: Schematic illustration of the fabrication of β-galactosidase-loaded PMA capsules[29]

  • Figure 3

    Using a “bump-and-hole” strategy to modify an NO delivery system based on an enzyme–prodrug pair. A: The “bump-and-hole”-based enzyme–prodrug system. B: The active sites of the engineered A4-β-GalH363A mutant. C: The in vivo specificity of the delivery system was evaluated using NIR imaging[36]

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