Theranostics is an integrated nanosystem that combines therapeutics with diagnostics in attempt to develop new personalized treatments with enhanced therapeutic efficacy and safety. As a promising therapeutic paradigm with cutting-edge technologies, theranostic agents are able to simultaneously deliver therapeutic drugs and diagnostic imaging agents and also monitor the response to therapy. Polymeric nanosystems have been intensively explored for biomedical applications to diagnose and treat various cancers. In recent years, glycol chitosan-based nanoagents have been developed as dual-purpose materials for simultaneous diagnosis and therapy. They have shown great potential in cancer therapies, such as chemotherapeutics and nucleic acid and photodynamic therapies. In this review, we summarize the recent progress and potential applications of glycol chitosan-based fluorescent theranostic nanoagents for cancer treatments and discuss their possible underlying mechanisms.
- Glycol chitosan