The NanoBioSaccharides project convenes an interdisciplinary consortium of scientists from academia and industry to develop and exploit nanotechnologies for the generation of knowledge-based, multifunctional, bio-inspired polysaccharides to be used as in telligent, sustainable, environment-friendly and consumer-safe biomaterials. As an example, chitosans generated from shrimp shell and squid pen wastes are an extremely versatile class of biopolymers with superior structural properties and supreme biologi cal activities. However, todays chitosans are ill-defined mixtures of poorly soluble, inhomogeneous polymers, explaining the lack of reproducibility in bio-medical and pharmaceutical applications that have so far prevented their successful commercial use. Other examples of versatile bioactive polysaccharides yet inappropriately exploited include plant pectins and alginates, and human and animal glycosaminoglycans. The core partners of the NanoBioSaccharides project have recently developed a novel concept for the relationship between the physico-chemical properties of chitosans and their biological activities. Based on this 'decoy' concept, we will now use nano- and bio-technologies for the production, modification, and characterisation of third generatio n bio-inspired polysaccharides. We will develop tailor-made chitosan nanoparticles for drug and gene delivery, and bio-inspired chitosan hydrogels for cell and tissue enigneering. By developing nanotechnologies suitable for polysaccharides, the third and so far neglected and unexploited class of information-bearing biopolymers, the NanoBioSaccharides project will secure the EU a head start in this emerging and promising field of functional bio-inspired materials. The project will integrate the whole pro duct chain from the raw materials to the novel, nano-structured biomaterials to be used in biotechnological applications in medicine, pharmacology, cosmetics, agriculture, and food sciences.'
Fields of science
- engineering and technologyother engineering and technologiesfood technology
- medical and health sciencesmedical biotechnologytissue engineering
- engineering and technologyindustrial biotechnologybiomaterials
- natural sciencesbiological sciencesbiochemistrybiomoleculescarbohydrates
- engineering and technologynanotechnology
- FP6-NMP - Nanotechnologies and nanosciences, knowledge-based multifunctional materials and new production processes and devices: thematic priority 3 under the 'Focusing and integrating community research' of the 'Integrating and strengthening the European Research Area' specific programme 2002-2006.
Call for proposal
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Funding SchemeSTREP - Specific Targeted Research Project