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This chapter basically reviews the basic principles
of magnetic nanoparticles, chemical synthetic pathways, its characterization
and stabilization methods. The design strategies, its performance and
biomedical applications are discussed. Magnetically responsive
nanodevices have a crucial role in In-
vivo applications like MRI, imaging of transplanted cells or tissue
reconstruction, stem cell labeling and tracking in vivo, imaging-assisted drug and gene
delivery, molecular targeting of chronic diseases such as atherosclerosis and
cancer, disease therapy,
safety and biocompatibility to name few. Toxicity of MNPs is multifactorial and
depends upon their composition, physicochemical properties such as size and
surface characteristics, route of administration, and dose. Knowledge about the
complex issues involving physiological, physicochemical and molecular processes
of magnetic nanosystems need to be considered for understanding the clinical
toxicity  These magnetic
nanosystems are of great advantage for nonsurgically removable neoplasia  (i.e., brain cancers or hemorrhagic tumors)
but limited to accessible tumor nodules. Hence surface functionalization is
important for target delivery because of specificity toward the target cells
overexpressing unique surface receptors. The biocompatibility of nanoparticles must be assessed in vitro,
prior to measuring their magnetic and relaxometric properties. Finally, the
biological kinetics (blood retention, organ uptake, clearance) and
contrast-enhancement effects of each new nanoparticulate system, must be
carefully studied in vivo. Nano carrier systems
have demonstrated to induce cytotoxicity and /or genotoxicity whereas their
antigenicity remains poorly characterized. Identification of best magnetic and
irradiation technologies is the requirement for the efficient delivery of
magnetic nanosystems. Emitters of magnetic fields are potentially expensive and
hence remain the major challenge for daily clinical practice. Finally, the
expansion of hybrid imaging modalities (MRI/PET, MRI/luminescence, MRI/SPECT,
MRI/echography), call for the development of multifunctional and increasingly
complex imaging tracers. Huge progress has been observed in this area of
magnetic nanosystem, but various challenges need to be addressed with respect
to clinical medicine and ensure the smooth transition of these concepts from
labs to market. Regulatory guidance enforce very strict requirements over the
design, manufacturing, reproducibility, potential toxicity and pharmacokinetic performance of such magnetic nanosystems.
 In this context, the 2020 nanomedicine
research outlook as viewed by the European Commission, is to establish a
stronger and faster transition of nanomedical R&D from a laboratory to
clinical development and approval (www.etp-nanomedicine.eu,
June 2017).

 

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