Nanotechnologybased Stem Cell Therapies for Damaged Heart Muscles

Regenerative medicine is an area in which stem cells hold great promise for overcoming the challenge of limited cell sources for tissue repair. Stem cell research is being pursued vigorously in the hope of achieving major medical breakthroughs. Scientists are striving to create therapies that rebuild or replace damaged cells with tissues grown from stem cells, offering hope to people with cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, spinal cord injuries, and many other disorders. Embryonic stem...

Nanoscale Power Plants

For the more than 100 million people worldwide who have diabetes, testing their blood glucose level is the only way to be sure that it is within normal range and to adjust the insulin dose if it is not. The current method for monitoring blood glucose requires poking a finger to obtain a blood sample. The equipment needed to perform the blood test includes a needle device for drawing blood, a blood glucose meter, single-use test strips, and a log book. Now imagine this scenario your doctor...

Analyzing Biocompatibility of Nanomedical Applications with Blood

Any drug intended for systemic administration and all medical devices which will contact blood (e.g. oxygenators, tubing, catheters, artificial hearts) must undergo thorough biocompatibility testing. These tests include an in vitro assay to determine the material's potential to damage red blood cells (erythrocytes). Hemolysis, the abnormal breakdown of red blood cells either in the blood vessels (intravascular hemolysis) or elsewhere in the body (extravascular hemolysis), can lead to anemia or...

Celllike Nanofactories Inside the Body

Notwithstanding the huge amount of research going into this field, nanome-dicine by and large is still in the basic research stage. Fundamental problems like the targeting of nanoparticles in vivo, the transport of unstable drugs, and the dosage control of drug-carrying nanoparticles lead some scientists to think even further, much further, ahead. Rather than delivering external drugs into the body, they conceptualize artificial-cell nanofactories that work with raw ingredients already in the...

Highly Effective Radiofrequency Absorbers for Cancer Therapy

Another treatment for cancer is radiofrequency ablation (RF ablation) which works by inserting a thin needle guided by CT or ultrasound through the skin and into a tumor. Electrical energy is then delivered through a number of electrodes deployed through the needle, causing a zone of thermal destruction that encompasses the tumor. Although minimally invasive, this procedure requires the surgeon to insert the RF probes into the tumor and typically creates a zone of non-specific tissue...

Nanobarcodes to Quickly Identify Biological Weapons

The list of possible terror threats is large and, in addition to explosives, counter-terrorism efforts are concerned with uncovering biological weapons. In an effort to detect biological threats quickly and accurately, a number of detection technologies have been developed. This rapid growth and development in biodetection technology has largely been driven by the emergence of new and deadly infectious diseases and the realization of biological warfare as a new means of terrorism. To address...

Nanotechnology and Water Treatment

According to the World Water Council, only 30 of all fresh water on our planet is not locked up in ice caps or glaciers (although not for much longer, unfortunately). Of that, some 20 is in areas too remote for humans to access and of the remaining 80 about three-quarters comes at the wrong time and place in monsoons and floods and is not always captured for use by people. The remainder is less than 0.6 of all the fresh water on the planet. Expressed another way, if all the Earth's water were...

How Can You See Feel or Hear Something so Incredibly Tiny

In 1981, the scanning tunneling microscope (STM) was invented, followed 4 years later by the atomic force microscope (AFM) and that's when nanoscience and nanotechnology really started to take off. Various forms of scanning probe microscopes (SPM) based on these discoveries are essential for many areas of today's research. Conventional optics cannot resolve objects measuring tens of nanometers or less because the visible wavelength of light is roughly between 400 and 750 nm. With scanning probe...

Nanotechnology is Key to Improving Fuel Cell Performance

Modern fuel cells have the potential to revolutionize transportation. Like battery electric vehicles, fuel cell vehicles are propelled by electric motors. But whereas battery electric vehicles use electricity from an external source and store it in a battery, fuel cells on board a vehicle are electrochemical devices that convert a fuel's chemical energy directly to electrical energy with high efficiency and without combustion. One of the leading fuel cell technologies developed, in particular...

Nanocomposite Coatings for Superior Dry Selflubrication

While many dynamic systems are lubricated by fluids of various kinds, high-tech machinery found in many industries like aerospace, clean room equipment, or medical devices, requires the application of dry coatings in order to reduce friction and wear. Lubrication of dynamic surfaces by fluids adds complexity, weight, and cost to the system, which imposes various constraints and limits the performance of these systems. Self-lubricating coatings, i.e. coatings which exhibit reduced wear and...

Novel Nanocomposite Material to Combat White Pollution

Polystyrene, also known under its trademark name Styrofoam, is found in your home, office, local grocery, fast food outlet, and cafeteria. It comes in many shapes and forms foam egg cartons and meat trays, plates and salad boxes, coffee cups and utensils, CD jewel boxes, and the foam peanuts used in packaging. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Municipal Solid Waste statistics, solid waste in the USA in 2005 contained almost 2.6 million tonnes of polystyrene a material that...

Contributing to the Fight against Alzheimers

There is currently no cure for Alzheimer's disease, and its ultimate cause is still unknown. The disease affects millions of people around the world. Experts predict that this figure is expected to rise dramatically as the population, especially in developed countries, ages. Genetic factors are known to be important in causing the disease and dominant mutations in different genes have been identified that account for both early-onset and late-onset Alzheimer's. For a number of years,...

Carbon Nanotubes as Effective Cancer Killers

Curing cancer is one of the many promises of nanotechnology. Although scientists have been making amazing progress in this area, there are still significant challenges that need to be overcome before highly selective, targeted anticancer therapies become available for everyday clinical use. A nanotechnology-based system to eradicate cancer requires four elements 1 molecular imaging at the cellular level so that even the slightest overexpressions can be monitored 2 effective molecular targeting...

Improving Lithium Ion Battery Performance

Lithium ion batteries seem to be everywhere these days. They power most of the electronic devices we carry around with us cellphones, laptops, MP3 players, digital cameras, and so on. They get their name from the lithium ion that moves from the anode to the cathode during discharge and from the cathode to the anode during recharging. Because of their good energy-to-weight ratios, lithium batteries are some of the most energetic rechargeable batteries available today. In terms of weight and...

Nanotoxicology Assessing the Risks

New technology, whether it is a novel cancer treatment or an innovative approach to making a new material, almost always comes with risk. Nano-technologies are no exception. Certain nanofabrication techniques employ toxic chemicals, the production of carbon nanotubes results in dangerous by-products, and the big question as to what degree certain engineered nanoparticles could be harmful to humans and the environment has not yet been answered. The potentially adverse health effects of fine and...

Toxic Nanotechnologya Problem that Could Result in Surprising Benefits

The fight against infections is as old as civilization. Silver, for instance, was already recognized in ancient Greece and Rome for its infection-fighting properties and it has a long and intriguing history as an antibiotic in human health care. Modern pharmaceutical companies developed powerful antibiotics as an apparently high-tech solution to get nasty microbes under control. In the 1950s, penicillin was so successful that the U.S. Surgeon General at the time, William H. Stewart, declared it...

Removing Heavy Metals from Water

Numerous nanomaterials are in various stages of research and development, each possessing unique functionalities that are potentially applicable to the remediation of polluted industrial wastewater, groundwater, surface water, and drinking-water. The main goal of most of this research is to develop cheap and environmentally friendly materials for removal of heavy metals from water. One example is a novel, low-cost magnetic sorbent material for the removal of heavy metal ions from water,...

Peacock Feathers and Butterfly Wings Inspire Biotemplated Nanomaterials

Photonic crystals also known as photonic bandgap material are similar to semiconductors, except that the electrons are replaced by photons i.e. light . By creating periodic structures out of materials that differ in their dielectric constants, it becomes possible to guide the flow of light through the photonic crystals in a way similar to how electrons are directed through doped regions of semiconductors. The photonic bandgap which forbids propagation of a certain frequency range of light gives...

Textile Transistors to Create Truly Wearable Electronics

If current research is an indicator, wearable electronics will go far beyond just very small electronic devices. Not only will such devices be embedded on textile substrates, but an electronics device or system could become the fabric itself. Electronic textiles e-textiles will allow the design and production of a new generation of garments with distributed sensors and electronic functions. Such e-textiles will have the revolutionary ability to sense, act, store, emit, and move think biomedical...

Nanotechnologys Medical Applications

For centuries, humans have searched for miracle cures to end suffering caused by disease and injury. Many researchers believe nanotechnologies may be our first giant step toward this goal. Whether this belief is based on fact or hope, many corporations and governments are willing to invest a great deal of resources to find out what happens when nanotechnology is used for medical applications the emerging field of nanomedicine. Hundreds of millions, if not billions of dollars have been invested...

Selfhealing Anticorrosion Coatings as an Alternative to Toxic Chromium

Remember the blockbuster movie Erin Brockovich The film is based on a real-world legal case that revolved around hexavalent chromium, also known as chromium vi , used by the Pacific Gas and Electric Company PG amp E to control corrosion in cooling towers in its compressor station in Hinkley, California. Chromium vi , a natural metal, is known to be toxic and is recognized as a human carcinogen via inhalation. It also is widely used by industry in the manufacture of stainless steel, welding,...

Native Protein Nanolithography that can Write Read and Erase

Proteins are very specific about which other proteins or biochemicals they will interact with, and are therefore very useful for biosensing applications. If a malignant cancer develops in the human body, the cancer cells produce certain types of proteins. Identifying such proteins enables early detection of cancer. One of the goals of nanobiotechnology is to develop protein chips that respond sensitively to a very tiny amount of specific proteins in order to enable such early diagnosis. A...

Inhaling Bubbles to Fight Lung Cancer

Inhalation or respiratory therapy is a traditional medical treatment that dates back to ancient times and not always for purely therapeutic effects witness the hookah. In the late 18th century, earthenware inhalers became popular for the inhalation of air drawn through infusions of plants and other ingredients, and about 50 years ago the first pressurized metered dose inhaler was put on the market. People suffering from asthma are very familiar with inhalers devices that help deliver a specific...

Turning Diesel Soot into Carbon Nanotubes

Diesel-burning engines are a major contributor to environmental pollution. They emit a mixture of gases and fine particles that contain some 40 mostly toxic chemicals including benzene, butadiene, dioxin, and mercury compounds. Diesel exhaust is listed as a known or probable human carcinogen by several regulatory agencies. Wouldn't it be nice if diesel soot could be rendered harmless before it is released into the environment Wouldn't it even be nicer if this soot could be used to manufacture...

Biosensor for Salmonella Detection

Food and Drug Administration has published a handbook called the Bad Bug Book3 which provides basic facts regarding food-borne pathogenic microorganisms and natural toxins. It contains all you always wanted to know about Salmonella, E. coli, parasitic protozoa, worms, viruses and natural toxins that, when they get into your food, as they do from time to time, can make you quite sick, even kill you. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention CDC keep some pretty scary...

Nanoparticle Photodynamic Therapy for Deep Cancer Treatment

Photodynamic therapy PDT is a cancer treatment that combines a chemical compound, called a photosensitizer, with a particular type of light to kill cancer cells. The treatment works like this the photosensitizing agent is injected into the bloodstream. The agent is absorbed by cells all over the body, but stays in cancer cells longer than it does in normal cells. One to three days after injection, when most of the agent has left normal cells but remains in cancer cells, the tumor is exposed to...

Green Nanotechnology

'Green nanotechnology' is usually defined as a set of technologies that offer the possibility of changing the manufacturing process in two ways Incorporating nanotechnology for efficient, controlled manufacturing would drastically reduce waste products and the use of nanomaterials as catalysts for greater efficiency in current manufacturing processes by minimizing or eliminating the use of toxic materials and the generation of undesirable byproducts and effluents.''1 In a broad sense, this term...

Nanoscale Water Pump Imitating Cell Pores

Nanofluidic channels that confine and transport tiny amounts of fluids are the pipelines that make the cellular activities of organisms possible. Nanoscale channels carry nutrients and water into cells and transport waste and water out. Body temperature, digestion, reproduction, fluid pressure in the eye, and water conservation in the kidney are only a few of the processes in the human body that depend on the proper functioning of cellular water channels. Special proteins called aquaporins can...

Building Nanostructuresfrom the Top Down and from the

2.1 Applying a 250 Year Old Discovery to Nanofabrication 30 2.2 Single Atom Manipulation on a 3-D Surface 32 2.3 Native Protein Nanolithography that can Write, Read, and Erase 33 RSC Nanoscience and Nanotechnology No. 8 Nano-Society Pushing the Boundaries of Technology By Michael Berger Michael Berger 2009 Published by the Royal Society of Chemistry, www.rsc.org 2.4 Playing Rubik's Cube with Nanoparticles 35 2.5 Nanofabrication Based on Inorganic Replicas of Complex Biotemplates 38 2.6 Viruses...

Preface

This book is a journey through the world of nanotechnology research and development that takes a very personal look at how nanotechnologies are created today. You will read about 122 research projects that are taking place in laboratories around the world and you will meet the scientists who developed the theories, conducted the experiments, and built the new materials and devices that will each take us one step further into our nanotechnology future. Chemists and biologists have always dealt...