Background: The group of fluorophores on boron dipyrrin platform (4,4- difluoro-4-bora3a,4a-diaza-s-indacene, also known as BODIPY) has attracted much attention in the field of molecular sensorics, including sensing of biomolecules and bioprocesses. Structural diversity of existing BODIPY with ample opportunities of directed modification of compounds makes this class of fluorophores attractive for medical and biological purposes. The recent progress in the design and functionalization of BODIPY allows using them for modification of drug micro- and nanocarriers in order to improve their therapeutic effect in cancer treatment. At the same time, integration of BODIPY into drug carriers provides the possibility of in vitro and in vivo real time imaging of used drug carriers. The high fluorescent intensity and low toxicity of BODIPY granted for conjugation with different biomolecules.Results: The present review focuses on the recent advances for application of individual BODIPY in medical diagnostics, antimicrobial activity, as well as establishing the role of BODIPY in labeling of biomolecules (e.g. proteins, hormones and DNA). Also the review highlights the potential of BODIPY in functionalization of drug micro- and nanocarriers in order to achieve better therapeutic efficiency compared with non-modified materials. The advantages derived from the use of BODIPY for preparation and modification of drug carriers are critically evaluated and potential for future challenges, especially concerning the design of innovative multi-functional BODIPY-based nanocarriers, is discussed in detail using representative examples from literature. Conclusion: Our objective was to show that BODIPY are powerful tools for bioimaging, labeling of biomolecules and construction of new multifunctional drug carriers.
Keywords: Advanced functional and healthcare materials, antimicrobial activity, boron dipirryns (BODIPY), DNA and RNA, in vivo and in vitro cell imaging, medical diagnostics, molecular sensorics, multifunctional drug carriers, proteins.