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01.Diamond and Related Materials for Biological Applications (pp.145-154)
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Diamond and Related Materials for Biological Applications (pp.145-154) $100.00
Authors:  (Andrew Hopper, Frederik Claeyssens, University of Sheffield, Materials Science and Engineering Department, Kroto Research Institute, Sheffield, United Kingdom)
Diamond and related materials, such as diamond like carbon (DLC) are currently widely studied as materials for biology, both in thin film form (for substrates of biosensors or to enhance cell growth) and in nanoparticle form (as fluorescent markers and drug delivery vehicles). This review highlights and summarises important advances in the emerging field of diamond based biomaterials. Its beneficial electrical and chemical properties such as a high refractive index, low surface roughness, biocompatibility and corrosion-resistance make diamond and its related materials suitable for a wide range of biological applications. Additionally, reliable chemical functionalisation routes of diamond surfaces have recently emerged, enabling the controllable covalent attachment of biomolecules onto this surface.
Nanodiamond (ND) and ultrananocrystalline diamond (UNCD) films can be deposited under relatively mild conditions to biological surfaces as a substrate for further chemical functionalisation. Such chemical additions could pave the way for a variety of future applications such as in biosensing and microelectromechanical (MEMs) devices. Diamond films have also been suggested as a suitable method of improving the biocompatibility of objects which may come into contact with physiological fluids in vivo such as surgical tools and artificial prostheses.
At the smaller length scale diamond nanoparticles have also been synthesised and have been suggested as suitable carriers for drug and gene delivery, achieving promising results for insulin delivery into cells. Nanodiamond particles may also be utilising for bioimaging purposes, where their small size (5 nm diameter) enables them to cross the cell membrane permitting their observation within individual cells by fluorescence microscopy. Similarly, carbon nanodots (C-dots, carbon nanoparticles with diameters typically below 10 nm) are also well suited to roles in bioimaging. Taken up by cells
through endocytosis, they are thought to be potential successors to quantum dots which have limited applications for in vivo and in vitro imaging due to their inherent cytotoxicity. Their widespread advantages, such as low cost synthesis, chemical stability, ability for conjugation/functionalisation and resilience to photobleaching illustrate their potential for applications in optical imaging.
The remarkable properties exhibited by diamond and its associated forms continue to appeal to scientists as research in the area constantly proliferates. It is envisaged that diamond-based materials will play an increasingly important role in the future of biomaterial development. 

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Diamond and Related Materials for Biological Applications (pp.145-154)