Nanotechnology is one of the most controversial and innovative modern technologies. Simply put, nanotechnology is any science that involves working with atoms, molecules or any matter on a scale of 1 to 100 nanometers. A nanometer is basically 1/1,000,000,000 of a meter. If you are trying to visualise this measurement, picture this; the thickness of a newspaper sheet is about 100,000 nanometers. Talks about Nanotechnology or Nanoscience started as far back as 1959 with Physicist Richard Feynman. It was later expanded upon in 1981 by engineer Eric Drexler. Like all previous technological solutions, the foray into the world of Nanoparticles (Nanomedical) has had a fair impact on healthcare solutions from around the globe.
Application of nanotechnology is heavily funded as it permeates every aspect of human life. Billions of dollars have been invested by USA, Japan and China into nano research, for uses including both military and industry. Nanoscience is currently being viewed for use in consumer products, power generation, Nanomedicine as well as biomaterials. Amazing new innovations have been developed within the Nanoscience world, and none less noticeable than in the Nanomedical solutions.
Diverse Healthcare Solutions
Within Nanomedical technology, various healthcare solutions have already been created. A broad view of nanomedical innovations includes biomedical sensors, diagnostics, as well as molecular nanotechnology. Nanotechnology in medicine and healthcare is basically about providing solutions to healthcare problems from a molecular scale, that will impact the entire organism.
This prospect brings to the fore the importance of environmental elements, such as toxicity in the surrounding as well as nano-sized particles that interact with the body. A few amazing nanomedical innovations that are hitting the mainstream include
Detecting Heart Attacks:
Studies on heart attack have detected a recurring trait that is now linked as a precursor. Using a wireless transmitter nano-bot in the bloodstream, the amount of arterial slough coming off the heart walls can be used to track the possibility of a heart attack coming on.
Nanoscience is being used to design silicon insects modelled after naturally occurring insects that have the antibiotic properties of these organisms. Antibacterial nanotechnology is not limited to silicon materials as some researchers now use gold particles and molecules for antibacterial treatment. Bacteria are also being employed to transport nano-robots to specific sites for use.
The use of nano-electric pulses enabled by nanogenerators in bandages is being researched for treating open wounds. These pulses seem to improve the time it takes for these wounds to heal. But, nanoscience doesn’t just work for external wounds or surgeries. The case is being made for internal injuries and bleeding by a lecturer from Case Western University whose research is on developing nanoplatelets.
The use of nanotechnology for repairing diseased or old and damaged cells. This is also applicable to the use of nanoparticles for cancer research and treatment. Chromosome Replacement Therapy has been employed successfully in genetically altering mice in order to study the effects of the Y chromosome in mammals. The success of such therapy can be used to permanently alter pathogenic pests and as corrective therapy for human genetic disorders.
These are intrinsic in diagnostics and disease management as they have access to various parts of the body that external diagnostics can barely reveal. For cancer research, this breakthrough translates to faster detection and easier trackings of treatment progress. A lot of work and organizations have been set up for monitoring Nanotechnology and healthcare innovations for cancer treatment to enable safe yet rapid use of new healing innovations. Most notable application if nano-robotics in treating cancer is for delivery of chemotherapy to the specific cancer cells without the attendant immuno-suppression that comes with the general application of chemotherapy. If Chemotherapy can be safely delivered to cancer cells, the costs; financially and healthwise, of multiple chemotherapy sessions will be greatly reduced and productivity multiplied.
Another aspect of nano-robotics is in boosting our immunity. Specialised robotic cells which are shaped like white blood cells are released into the blood to fight disease. When the bacteria get attached to these faux cells, they are captured and decontaminated, the deactivated bacterial cells are then released back into the blood as harmless constituents.
Nano-bots are currently being tested for the treatment of blood clots and oxygen transportation around the body. These blood cells or platelet functions have not yet been achieved but are highly anticipated nano-healthcare solutions. One major challenge of Nanorobotics is that of tracking and safe removal of the robots once they are done.
Nanotechnology is such a wide field that it would take a myriad of articles to scratch the surface. The human race is capable of achieving tons of innovations with it. As with all new technology, it comes with loads of controversy about possible misuses and side effects. Ethics and morality concerns are also strong contenders for the controlled use of nanosciences.
Nanotechnology holds the key to the future of healthcare solutions. A lot of ethical problems have accompanied the rise of nanomedical innovations and nanotechnology. To learn more about Nanotechnology and Healthcare innovations, the links below offer more information. .