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A Two-Dimensional Biodegradable Niobium Carbide (MXene) for Photothermal Tumor Eradication in NIR-I and NIR-II Biowindows

Lin, Han, Gao, Shanshan, Dai, Chen, Chen, Yu, Shi, Jianlin
Journal of the American Chemical Society 2017 v.139 no.45 pp. 16235-16247
biocompatibility, biodegradability, delamination, engineering, humans, liquids, mechanical properties, mice, myeloperoxidase, nanosheets, neoplasms, niobium, phototherapy, phototoxicity
Conventionally, ceramics-based materials, fabricated by high-temperature solid-phase reaction and sintering, are preferred as bone scaffolds in hard-tissue engineering because of their tunable biocompatibility and mechanical properties. However, their possible biomedical applications have rarely been considered, especially the cancer phototherapeutic applications in both the first and second near-infrared light (NIR-I and NIR-II) biowindows. In this work, we explore, for the first time as far as we know, a novel kind of 2D niobium carbide (Nb₂C), MXene, with highly efficient in vivo photothermal ablation of mouse tumor xenografts in both NIR-I and NIR-II windows. The 2D Nb₂C nanosheets (NSs) were fabricated by a facile and scalable two-step liquid exfoliation method combining stepwise delamination and intercalation procedures. The ultrathin, lateral-nanosized Nb₂C NSs exhibited extraordinarily high photothermal conversion efficiency (36.4% at NIR-I and 45.65% at NIR-II), as well as high photothermal stability. The Nb₂C NSs intrinsically feature unique enzyme-responsive biodegradability to human myeloperoxidase, low phototoxicity, and high biocompatibility. Especially, these surface-engineered Nb₂C NSs present highly efficient in vivo photothermal ablation and eradication of tumor in both NIR-I and NIR-II biowindows. This work significantly broadens the application prospects of 2D MXenes by rationally designing their compositions and exploring related physiochemical properties, especially on phototherapy of cancer.