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Journal of Nanomaterials
Volume 2012, Article ID 673968, 13 pages
Review Article

Nanomaterials for the Local and Targeted Delivery of Osteoarthritis Drugs

Department of Developmental Bioengineering, MIRA Institute for Biomedical Technology and Technical Medicine, Faculty of Science and Technology, University of Twente, 7522 NB Enschede, The Netherlands

Received 6 January 2012; Revised 17 February 2012; Accepted 20 February 2012

Academic Editor: Suprakas Sinha Ray

Copyright © 2012 Parthiban Chinnagounder Periyasamy 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.


Nanotechnology has found its potential in every possible field of science and engineering. It offers a plethora of options to design tools at the nanometer scale, which can be expected to function more effectively than micro- and macrosystems for specific applications. Although the debate regarding the safety of synthetic nanomaterials for clinical applications endures, it is a promising technology due to its potential to augment current treatments. Various materials such as synthetic polymer, biopolymers, or naturally occurring materials such as proteins and peptides can serve as building blocks for adaptive nanoscale formulations. The choice of materials depends highly on the application. We focus on the use of nanoparticles for the treatment of degenerative cartilage diseases, such as osteoarthritis (OA). Current therapies for OA focus on treating the symptoms rather than modifying the disease. The usefulness of OA disease modifying drugs is hampered by side effects and lack of suitable drug delivery systems that target, deliver, and retain drugs locally. This challenge can be overcome by using nanotechnological formulations. We describe the different nanodrug delivery systems and their potential for cartilage repair. This paper provides the reader basal understanding of nanomaterials and aims at drawing new perspectives on the use of existing nanotechnological formulations for the treatment of osteoarthritis.