Prolate spheroidal hematite particles equatorially belt with drug-carrying layered double hydroxide disks: Ring Nebula-like nanocomposites
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Nanoscale Research Letters 2011, 6:116 doi:10.1186/1556-276X-6-116Published: 3 February 2011
A new nanocomposite architecture is reported which combines prolate spheroidal hematite nanoparticles with drug-carrying layered double hydroxide [LDH] disks in a single structure. Spindle-shaped hematite nanoparticles with average length of 225 nm and width of 75 nm were obtained by thermal decomposition of hydrothermally synthesized hematite. The particles were first coated with Mg-Al-NO3-LDH shell and then subjected to anion exchange with salicylate ions. The resulting bio-nanohybrid displayed a close structural resemblance to that of the Ring Nebula. Scanning electron microscope and transmission electron microscopy images showed that the LDH disks are stacked around the equatorial part of the ellipsoid extending along the main axis. This geometry possesses great structural tunability as the composition of the LDH and the nature of the interlayer region can be tailored and lead to novel applications in areas ranging from functional materials to medicine by encapsulating various guest molecules.