Editorial Feature

What is Nanoinformatics?

Nanoinformatics is the intersection of informatics and nanotechnology. This interdisciplinary topic investigates approaches and online tools for better comprehending nanomaterials, their properties, and their relationships with biological organisms. 

What is Nanoinformatics?

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Nanoinformatics is required for the intelligent development and comparative characterization of nanomaterials via detector and manufacturing techniques. Nanoinformatics increases scientific discovery and learning by using data mining and machine learning.

Background of Nanoinformatics

Contrary to normal chemicals, nanomaterials have additional physical characteristics that must be measured to fully describe their chemical structure and content. Also, nanoparticles formulations are often non-uniform, requiring property distributions to be described. These molecular qualities impact their macro biochemical, physiological, and ecological aspects.

They are vital in both the scientific and computational characterization of nanoparticles.  As a result, nanoinformatics is a field that combines information on health, security, well-being, and efficiency with risk management and developing nanotechnology.

History of Nanoinformatics

The First Worldwide Conference held on Occupational Medical Consequences of Nanostructured materials, held 12–14 October 2004 at the Palace Hotel in Buxton, Derbyshire, UK. It was an important global seminar with a meaningful debate about the need for communicating all kinds of information on nanotechnology and nanomaterials.

The terminology "nanoinformatics" was coined in 2010 by a research group of scientists named Nanoinformatics 2010.

The committee was compelled to evaluate the interdisciplinary character of this area of research as well as the continual growth of its definition to reflect the creation of new technologies, tools, and techniques. The 2015 Nanoinformatics Seminar supported the "Nanoinformatics Road Map 2020" as the most comprehensive approach.

Applications of Nanoinformatics

In fundamental research, commerce, and environmental health, nanoinformatics can rapidly evaluate vast volumes of data. Nanoinformatics is used to identify and treat cancer, health and environmental issues, and investigate nanoparticle-drug structures.  

It plays an important role in researching, designing, and manufacturing nanoparticles. It may also be used to record and analyze experimental test outcomes from nanoparticle administration to various environmental and physical targets and situations.

Nanoinformatics in Nanomedicine

Nanotechnologists started researching nanomaterials for medicine over a decade ago, with this investigation highlighting several obstacles and possibilities. Some of these obstacles are directly connected to informatics, such as managing and integrating heterogeneous data, developing nomenclatures, ontologies, and taxonomies for diverse nanomaterials, and researching novel nanoparticle modeling and simulation methodologies.

Challenges in the Field of Nanoinformatics

Computational chemistry, artificial intelligence and machine learning can link structural attributes to functional aspects of nanomaterials. However, this is not an easy task.

Machine learning was designed for massive data sets with few consistent characteristics. Typically, nanomaterials data sets are limited, have computational complexity, and have many biases.

Impact of Nanoinformatics

The quantity of data on nanoparticle toxicity is growing, implying that a variety of features may interact and affect the extent, behavior, and environmental and health impact of adverse consequences - as well as the efficacy of existing therapies.

The type, volume, and technique of delivery of nanoparticles may have diverse impacts on applications, according to preliminary findings from in vitro investigations.

Nanoinformatics, or the study of the processes and consequences of nanoscale materials, is the most pressing issue confronting nano-medical technology today. This necessitates the management of this data and its connection to individual patient data.

Continue reading: Advancing Nano-Imaging Using 2D Materials

References and Further Reading

Panneerselvam, S. and Choi, S., (2014) Nanoinformatics: Emerging Databases and Available Tools. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 15(5), pp.7158-7182. https://www.mdpi.com/1422-0067/15/5/7158

Afantitis, A., Melagraki, G., Isigonis, P., Tsoumanis, A., Varsou, D. D., Valsami-Jones, E. & Lynch, I. (2020) NanoSolveIT Project: Driving nanoinformatics research to develop innovative and integrated tools for in silico nanosafety assessment. Computational and structural biotechnology journal18, 583-602. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2001037019305112?via%3Dihub

Kulikowski, C. A. (2002). The micro-macro spectrum of medical informatics challenges: from molecular medicine to transforming health care in a globalizing society. Methods of information in medicine41(01), 20-24. DOI: https://www.thieme-connect.de/products/ejournals/abstract/10.1055/s-0038-1634308

De la Iglesia, D., Harper, S., Hoover, M. D., Klaessig, F., Lippell, P., Maddux, B. & Tuominen, M. T. (2011). Nanoinformatics 2020 roadmap. https://zenodo.org/record/1486012

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Usman Ahmed

Written by

Usman Ahmed

Usman holds a master's degree in Material Science and Engineering from Xian Jiaotong University, China. He worked on various research projects involving Aerospace Materials, Nanocomposite coatings, Solar Cells, and Nano-technology during his studies. He has been working as a freelance Material Engineering consultant since graduating. He has also published high-quality research papers in international journals with a high impact factor. He enjoys reading books, watching movies, and playing football in his spare time.


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