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U12. Nanostructured liquid characterization unit

Ciber bbn

U12. Nanostructured liquid characterization unit

    • Scientific Director: Prof. Carlos Rodríguez cranqb@cid.csic.es
    • Scientific Coordinator: Jordi Esquena jemqci@iqac.csic.es
    • Entities: Colloid and Interfacial Chemistry Group (QCI) at the Institute of Advanced Chemistry of Catalonia (IQAC) & Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC)
    • Address: Jordi Girona, 18-26, 088034, Barcelona, Spain
    • Phone: +34 934 006 159
    • Web: QCI – IQAC- CSIC
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The unit is located at the Institute of Advanced Chemistry of Catalonia (IQAC-CSIC), in Barcelona and it is coordinated by the Colloidal and Interfacial Chemistry Group, led by Dr. Carlos Rodríguez. The unit is focused on the characterization of nanostructures in liquids and liquid/liquid interfaces, such as micelles, liposomes, micro- and nano-emulsions, and nanoparticles. The unit features state-of-the-art instrumentation for the determination of various parameters such as size distribution and zeta potential (surface charge), critical micelle concentration (CMC), solubilization capacity, osmolarity, surface and interfacial tension, wettability, refractive index, turbidity, colloidal stability, density, viscosity and other rheological parameters (shear and elastic moduli, critical yield stress, etc.)

U12. Services & Rates

Active projects

TitleFundin: OrganismCall: Funding source Role
SAF2017-90810-REDIStrategic Promotion and coordinated management of Nanbiosis: Pronanbiosis IIAgencia Estatal de Investigación (AEI)Acciones de dinamización «REDES DE EXCELENCIA» -ICTS 2017Partner
PICCOLO-732111Multimodal highly-sensitive PhotonICs endoscope for improve in vivo COLOn Cancer diagnosis and clinical decision supportEuropean Commission-H2020H2020-ICT-2016-1Partner
0624_2IQBIONEURO_6_EPromotion of an R&I network in biological chemistry for the diagnosis and treatment of neurological diseasesEuropean Union Interreg : European Territorial Co-operationPOCTEP Interreg España-PortugalPartner

Other projects

RefTitleFunding OrganismUnit Role
CTQ2014-52687-C3-1-PDesign and applications of new biocompatible micro / nanogels obtained by advanced condensation methods (MICRONANOGELES)MINECOParticipant
2014SGR1655Grants for consolidated Research Groups of CataloniaGeneralitat de CatalunyaParticipant
FP7-PEOPLE-2013-ITN - 606713Biopolymer Based FOOd Delivery Systems (BIBAFOODS)Unión EuropeaParticipant
Plan de Actuación 2015Agreement of ACC1Ó with the UAB, the PRUAB, the CSIC and the CVC for the promotion of the technological transferGeneralitat de CatalunyaParticipant
TECSPR14-2-0033 Theranostic Magnetic Nanoparticles For Cancer Diagnosis and Treatment: Magnetic Properties and Controlled Release of Anticancer Drugs (TheraMagNano)Unión EuropeaParticipant
TECSPR14-2-0044Novel antimicrobial hydrogels for contact lenses (HYDROLENSES)Unión EuropeaParticipant
Acción COST CM1101Joint Meeting of WG 3 and WG 4. Workshop "Nano-biocolloidal materials and non-equilibrium self-assembly"Unión europeaParticipant



  • Fornaguera C., Caldero G., Solans C.. Electrolytes as a tuning parameter to control nano-emulsion and nanoparticle size. RSC Advances. 2016;6(63):58203-58211.
  • Caldero G., Montes R., Llinas M., Garcia-Celma M.J., Porras M., Solans C.. Studies on the formation of polymeric nano-emulsions obtained via low-energy emulsification and their use as templates for drug delivery nanoparticle dispersions. Colloids and Surfaces B: Biointerfaces. 2016;145:922-931.
  • Fornaguera C., Feiner-Gracia N., Caldero G., Garcia-Celma M.J., Solans C.. PLGA nanoparticles from nano-emulsion templating as imaging agents: Versatile technology to obtain nanoparticles loaded with fluorescent dyes. Colloids and Surfaces B: Biointerfaces. 2016;147:201-209.
  • Magana J.R., Kolen’Ko Y.V., Deepak F.L., Solans C., Shrestha R.G., Hill J.P. et al. From Chromonic Self-Assembly to Hollow Carbon Nanofibers: Efficient Materials in Supercapacitor and Vapor-Sensing Applications. ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces. 2016;8(45):31231-31238.
  • Perez-Carrillo L.A., Vilchez S., Mosa J., Aparicio M., Castro Y., Duran A. et al. Synthesis and properties of TiO2-P2O5 and SiO2-TiO2-P2O5 porous hybrids obtained by templating in highly concentrated emulsions. Ceramics International. 2016;42(16):18965-18973.

News U12

26 Apr

A Concise Review on Nano-emulsion Formation by the Phase Inversion Composition (PIC) Method

Researchers of NANBIOSIS U12. Nanostructured liquid characterization unit from CIBER-BBN and IQAC-CSIC have recently published an interesting review entitled “A Concise Review on Nano-emulsion Formation by the Phase Inversion Composition (PIC) Method” in the JOURNAL OF SURFACTANTS AND DETERGENTS. https://doi.org/10.1002/jsde.12414 Studies of phase behavior and particle sizing were performed at the Nanostructured Liquid Characterization Unit, member of the NANBIOSIS ICTS.[...]

07 Feb

Ethylcellulose nanoparticles as new “in vitro” tool for cell transfection

Researchers of NANBIOSIS U12 Nanostructured liquid characterization unit and U29 Oligonucleotide Synthesis Platform (OSP) of CIBER-BBN at IQAC-CSIC have obtained successfully ethylcellulose nanoparticles with positive zeta potential formed from nano-emulsion complexation with an antisense oligonucleotide which result very promising complexes for “in vitro” cell transfection. A new non-viral gene delivery vector has been developed, based on ethylcellulose, an easily available and low cost carbohydrate polymer, “generally recognized as safe” by the FDA. Although ethylcellulose is nonionic, positively charged nanoparticle dispersions have been obtained using nano-emulsion templates in cationic:non-ionic surfactant-based systems. The nanoparticles have been successfully complexed with negatively charged phosphorothioate antisens[...]

02 Dec

Carlos Rodriguez-Abreu (NANBIOSIS U12) keynote speaker in OKINAWA COLLOIDS 2019

Carlos Rodriguez-Abreu, Scientific Director of NANBIOSIS U12 Nanostructured liquid characterization unit has been invited speaker at OKINAWA COLLOIDS 2019 conference in Okinawa, Japan on November 3 to 8, 2019 in the session Foams / Bubbles / Emulsions and Microemulsions.Foams and emulsions stabilized by surfactants, amphiphilic polymers and solid particles are essential formulations for developing pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, foods and so on. Recently, many functional systems have been proposed including stimuli responsive materials, biocompatible materials, and environmental affinity materials. The topics of this session include a wide range of subjects: physical properties, phase behaviors and new functions of these systems.[...]

26 Oct

Formulation of emulsions: Science behind cosmetics at COSMETORIUM

Carlos Rodríguez-Abreu, Scientific Director of NANBIOSIS Unit 12 Nanostructured liquid characterization unit, from Institute of Advanced Chemistry of Catalonia, Higher Council for Scientific Research (IQAC-CSIC) and CIBER of Bioengineering, Biomaterials and Nanomedicine (CIBER-BBN) has participated in the fourth edition of COSMETORIUM, given a talk on “Recent advances in the formulation of emulsions” The fair of Cosmetorium, which was held at the Palau de Congresos de Barcelona on October 23 and 24, is organized by the Spanish Society of Cosmetic Chemists (SEQC), begun with keynote conferences and a scientific program, which examined the key problems facing the cosmetic and personal care industry,[...]

22 Aug


Next October 15-18, the researchers of NANBIOSIS U12, Nanostructured liquid characterization unit, are giving a course on Nano Technologies and Microencapsulation organized by CSIC General Foundation and CUIMPB – Center Ernest Lluch of the Menéndez Pelayo International University (UIMP) in Barcelona. The nano- and microencapsulation consists in the protection of active substances inside nano- and microcarriers, particularly labile molecules, improving their stability, with the aim of transporting them and achieving their controlled release. This topic is the subject of great interest in numerous fields and industrial applications. It is known that the performance efficiency of an active substance greatly increases[...]

30 Apr

3D cross-correlation dynamic light scattering (DLS) spectrometer of NANBIOSIS U12 has been upgraded

The 3D cross-correlation dynamic light scattering (DLS) spectrometer of NANBIOSIS U12 Nanostructured liquid characterization unit has been upgraded with a new goniometer and last generation laser detectors and beam splitters that allow to extend the scattering angle detection range to 10-150 degrees, and enables measurements in shorter scattering lengths for highly turbid and/or concentrated samples. Non-ergodic samples (e.g. gels) can also be measured with the new configuration The upgrade has been funded by CSIC through the grant “Special fund for the support of Scientific and Technical Services 2018” (02045)[...]

12 Apr

New tensiometer for NANBIOSIS Unit 12

The new Biolin Sigma 701 has replaced the previos KSV Sigma 700. in the equipment of NANBIOSIS U12 Nanostructured liquid characterization unit With this new tensiometer automated and high precision measurement of surface and interfacial tensions, contact angles and critical micelle concentrations will be obtained. The purchase of the new tensiometer has been co-funded by the CSIC through a grant received from the Scientific and Technical Services support (MEC1372).[...]

15 Nov

NANBIOSIS in the Posters presentation in CIBER-BBN ANNUAL CONFERENCE 2018

Last 12 and 13 of November, CIBER-BBN  has celebrated its 12th Annual Conference in Hotel Felipe IV in Valladolid. In poster session participated  NANBIOSIS  itself and some of its units. NANBIOSIS, Infrastructure for the Production & Characterization of Biomaterials, Nanomaterials and medical devices up to preclinical validation. Nanbiosis management team. Divalent cation effects on assembly of histidine-rich protein nanoparticles. López-Laguna, U. Unzueta, O. Conchillo-Solé, A. Sánchez-Chardi, M. Pesarrodona, O. Cano-Garrido, E. Voltà, L. Sánchez-García, N. Serna, P. Saccardo, R. Mangues, A. Villaverde, E. Vázquez (NBT-UAB) (U1 -U18) Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) anchored on the surface of contact lenses to prevent corneal infections. Emiliano Salvagni, Clara García,[...]