Theranostic nanomaterials hold the potential to revolutionize future disease
management. Recent progress in nanomaterials technology and aptamer-base-
-targeting molecules have promoted efficient theranostics models. Aptamers are unique
three-dimensional structures consisting of oligonucleotide (25-80 nt) polymers. They
are comparable to monoclonal antibodies in their receptor-driven binding efficacy
toward specific target receptors and binding ability to specific target molecules with
high affinity and specificity. Aptamers have several other advantages, including
prolonged shelf life, little or no variation from batch to batch, and ease of chemical
modifications for enhanced stability and targeting capacity. Owing to the advantages
mentioned above, aptamers are attracting great attention in diverse applications ranging
from therapy, drug delivery, diagnosis, and functional genomics as well as biosensing.
Herein, the aim is to give an overview of aptamers, highlight the opportunities of their
application as means of effective therapeutic tools as well as functionalize them as
potential diagnostic probes. Furthermore, the diverse modifications of aptamers for
theranostic purposes, including therapeutic agents and targeted delivery nanomaterials,
are comprehensively summarized.