Researchers from the University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada, have recently successfully delivered fluorescein-isothiocyanate-labelled magnetic carbon nanotubes (FITC-mCNT) into HSPC. More importantly, efficient FITC-mCNT uptake has no adverse effect on the cell viability and differentiation of HSPC.

The delivery method is effective and safe, paving the way for the labelling and tracking of transplanted stem cells. Unlike biological or chemical delivery methods, the mCNT-based technique does not depend on the targeted cell type because it employs a physical magnetic force for delivery.

Labelling of HSPC using mCNT would be a promising strategy for in vivo tracking of HSPC or gene delivery into HSPC. The researchers are now exploring these ideas in more detail.

The team presented its work in the journal Nanotechnology.