Graphene oxide (GO)-based nanocarriers have been frequently studied due to their high drug loading capacity. However, the unsatisfactory biocompatibility of these GO-based nanocarriers hampers their use in clinical settings. This review discusses how each of the physicochemical characteristics (e.g., size, surface area, surface properties, number of layers and particulate states) and surface coatings on GO affect its in vitro and in vivo nanotoxicity. We provide an overview on the effect of GO properties on interactions with cells such as red blood cells, macrophages and cell lines, and experimental organisms including rodents, rabbits and Zebrafish, offering some guidelines for development of safe GO-based nanocarriers. We conclude the paper by outlining the challenges involving GO-based formulations and future perspectives of this research in the biomedical field.
* Title and MeSH Headings from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.