Fighting COVID-19 and future pandemics with graphene

04 February 2021

Chemical functionalization of graphene-related materials to generate antiviral coatings on common items that can transfer pathogens (e.g. surgical masks, door handles, furniture).

Researchers from the CNRS and the University of Strasbourg (France) have critically surveyed the most promising strategies based on the applications of graphene-related materials reported in the literature to fight against viral pandemics such as COVID-19. This Perspective has been published in Advanced Materials.

 

Owing to their unique chemical and physical properties, graphene-related materials, such as graphene, graphene oxide and reduced graphene oxide, have been widely investigated in the last 15 years, and hold a real potential for applications in optoelectronics, energy generation and storage, (bio)chemical sensing, civil engineering, aeronautics, water purification, biomedicine, etc.

 

In this Perspective, the researchers, led by the bioorganic chemist Alberto Bianco (CNRS) and the physical chemist Paolo Samorì (University of Strasbourg and CNRS), showcase and detail the most relevant applications based on graphene-related materials described in the literature that can be envisaged to fight viral pandemics, with a strong focus on the impact of chemical functionalization, deposition techniques, and integration into devices and surface coatings.

 

In particular, the exploitation of the antiviral activity of suitably functionalized graphene-related materials for drug delivery, development of smart surfaces and coatings, and (bio)sensing is discussed. This critical analysis places graphene-related materials as powerful allies to combat against SARS-CoV-2 virus as well as other emerging infectious diseases.

 

Reference

Graphene: A Disruptive Opportunity for COVID-19 and Future Pandemics?
Giacomo Reina, Daniel Iglesias, Paolo Samorì* & Alberto Bianco*
Advanced Materials
, 2021, 33, 2007847
DOI : 10.1002/adma.202007847