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Interviewer: Professor Szunerits, thank
you for taking the time today to discuss
the possible role of nanotechnology
against human coronavirus infections.
Could you please put into context the
interest of nanotechnological approaches
to viral infections,
such as those caused by coronaviruses?
Prof. Szunerits: Thank you very much
for much for giving us the opportunity to
talk about this field in which we've
been involved in various aspects for
Prof. Szunerits: Nanotechnology
in the form of nanoparticles,
nanostructured surfaces up to
the use of single-domain antibodies
(called nanobodies) can help
provide solutions to four main
issues in the fight against
viral infection and spreading.
These four issues are: the search for
specific antiviral strategies which will
result in the deactivation of the virus,
the development of
nanotechnological aspects to detect
the viral load in patients
(this will limit viral spread),
eventually to help in the formulation
of vaccines or vaccines themselves,
and development of self-deactivating
devices like antiviral masks.
Generally speaking, nanodiagnostics
rely on the detection of the coronavirus
biomarkers in nasal swabs or saliva
samples using different nanotechnological
approaches such as field-effect
transistors, gold nanoparticles
(in the form of localized surface
or the use of handheld point-of-care
devices for viral sensing.