Antibiotics have been used in the treatment of various diseases. However, development of drug resistance among various species of micro-organisms reduces the effectiveness of antibiotics. Centres for Disease Control (2013) identified drug resistant species such as Clostridium difficile , Enterobacteriaceae, Neisseria gonorrhoeae as urgent threats and acinetobacter, camphylobacter, candida, enterococcus, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Salmonella, Shigella, Staphylococcus aureus and Staphylococcus pnuemoniae as serious threats to human health in USA.
Nanotechnology in drug administration and use of nanobiotics has been found to be more effective in drug resistant infection control and cancer treatment (Moodley, n.d.). Nanomaterials are particles of diameter between 1 to 100 nm which are capable of circulating human body, cells and blood vessels (European Agency, n.d.). Nanobiotics or the nanomaterials containing drugs are more effective in diagnosis, monitoring, treatment and prevention of diseases.
Nanomaterials such as silver, zinc oxide, titanium dioxide, gold chitosan, fullerenes, carbon nanotubes, quantum dots, dendrimers, liquid based nanoparticles, ceramic nanoparticels and nitric-oxide releasing nanoparticles can be applied as nanobiotics in the treatment of diseases (Moodley, n.d.). Crystalline nanoparticles can be used in X-ray based cancer treatment (understandingnano.com, 2009). Peptide rings, 2.5 nm rings of customised amino acids, have been found to be operative in tackling with staphylococcus aureus, a drug resistant bacterium (Mason, 2001).
Adverse side effects could be associated with nanobiotic treatment. Nanomaterials could induce inflammation, tissue damage, oxidative stress, chronic toxicity, cytotoxicity, fibrosis and tumer generation (European Agency, n.d.). Development and application of nanobiotic drugs and minimization of adverse effects will minimize the health complications associated with drug resistant micro-organisms.
Centres for Disease Control (CDC) (2013) Antibiotic Resistance Threats in the United States, 2013 [Online] Available at www.cdc.gov [Accessed on 26 January 2015].
European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (n.d.) Nanomaterials in the Healthcare Sector: Occupational Risk and Prevention [Online] Available at http://www.osha.europa.eu [Accessed on 25 January 2015].
Mason, J. (2001) Nanobiotic Life Saver [Online] Available at http://www.technologyreview.com [Accessed on 26 January 2015].
Moodley, N. (n.d.) Antimicrobial Activity of Ciprofloxacin-coated Gold Nanoparticles on Selected Pathogens [Online] Available at http://www.dut.ac.za [Accessed on 25 January 2015].
Understandingnano.com (2009) Nanoparticles for Enhanced X-ray treatment of Cancer Tumours [Online] Available at http://www.understandingnano.com [Accessed on 26 January 2015].