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Bioinorganic Chemistry and Applications
Volume 2019, Article ID 7147128, 27 pages
Review Article

Encapsulation of Gold Nanorods with Porphyrins for the Potential Treatment of Cancer and Bacterial Diseases: A Critical Review

1Department of Chemistry, University of Zululand, X1001, KwaDlangezwa, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa
2Department of Applied Chemistry, University of Johannesburg, P.O. Box 17011, Doornfontein, Johannesburg 2028, South Africa
3Centre for Nanomaterials Science Research, University of Johannesburg, Johannesburg, South Africa
4Department of Chemistry, University of Kwazulu Natal, Kwazulu Natal, South Africa

Correspondence should be addressed to Nthabeleng Hlapisi; moc.liamg@ahtisisn and Tshwafo E. Motaung;

Received 1 August 2018; Accepted 4 February 2019; Published 30 April 2019

Guest Editor: Rais A. Khan

Copyright © 2019 Nthabeleng Hlapisi et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Cancer and bacterial diseases have been the most incidental diseases to date. According to the World Health Report 2018, at least every family is affected by cancer around the world. In 2012, 14.1 million people were affected by cancer, and that figure is bound to increase to 21.6 million in 2030. Medicine therefore sorts out ways of treatment using conventional methods which have been proven to have many side effects. Researchers developed photothermal and photodynamic methods to treat both cancer and bacterial diseases. These methods pose fewer effects on the biological systems but still no perfect method has been synthesized. The review serves to explore porphyrin and gold nanorods to be used in the treatment of cancer and bacterial diseases: porphyrins as photosensitizers and gold nanorods as delivery agents. In addition, the review delves into ways of incorporating photothermal and photodynamic therapy aimed at producing a less toxic, more efficacious, and specific compound for the treatment.