Publication date: Sep 19, 2023
The field of nanomaterials has progressed dramatically over the past decades with important contributions to the biomedical area. The physicochemical properties of nanomaterials, such as the size and structure, can be controlled through manipulation of mass and heat transfer conditions during synthesis. In particular, microfluidic systems with rapid mixing and precise fluid control are ideal platforms for creating appropriate synthesis conditions. One notable example of microfluidics-based synthesis is the development of lipid nanoparticle (LNP)-based mRNA vaccines with accelerated clinical translation and robust efficacy during the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to LNPs, microfluidic systems have been adopted for the controlled synthesis of a broad range of nanomaterials. In this review, we introduce the fundamental principles of microfluidic technologies including flow field- and multiple field-based methods for fabricating nanoparticles, and discuss their applications in the biomedical field. We conclude this review by outlining several major challenges and future directions in the implementation of microfluidic synthesis of nanomaterials.