Research Topic

Nanotechnology in Traditional Medicines and Natural Products

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About this Research Topic

Bioactive natural products have been used worldwide over thousands of years with the goal of managing human health issues. They also represent a major source for drug discovery in the development of modern medicines. Although many natural products have been found to be bio-effective and low in toxicity, most ...

Bioactive natural products have been used worldwide over thousands of years with the goal of managing human health issues. They also represent a major source for drug discovery in the development of modern medicines. Although many natural products have been found to be bio-effective and low in toxicity, most of them cannot be applied as first-in-line drugs for therapy, mainly because of their limited bioavailability. Structural modification of natural products has thus become an important process in modern drug discovery. However, drug development based on manmade compounds is usually time-consuming and costly. Nanotechnology has shown great success in the delivery of therapeutic molecules, with many successful cases to date involving natural bioactive compounds.

The potential advantages of advanced nanosystems for natural products delivery include:

 1. improving dosing efficiency of bioactive compounds that are poorly soluble in water
 2. providing site-targeting delivery in controlled manners to minimize systemic side effects
 3. enhancing drug bioactivity through improving pharmacokinetic characteristics of the natural products
 4. easy to combine both therapeutic and diagnostic capabilities in a single system

This Research Topic is aimed at highlighting the current progress in natural product-based nanomedicines. The preparation and characterization of nanotherapeutics as well as their biological evaluation will form the main focus of this article collection. The selected nanosystems can be composed of either organic or inorganic materials, or both. Non-drug bioactive natural products or their combinations are our main targets, while the delivery of well-developed drugs will be less considered. This Research Topic will not be limited to nanodelivery systems, as it is also open for advanced nanotechniques and nanodevices in other scientific and technical aspects of natural product-based nanomedicines and nanotheranostics.

This Research Topic will address themes that include, but are not limited to:

 • Nanocarriers for natural product delivery and controlled release
 • The construction of nanomedicines by using natural products as structural moieties and their applications
 • Natural product-made nanocrystals and their biomedical applications
 • Natural product-assisted combination therapy based on nanoparticles
 • Natural product-based nanotheranostics
 • Other nanotechniques and nanodevices for natural product-based medicines


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