Nanotechnology: The Future Of Medicine Essay

2203 words - 9 pages

In recent years, researchers around the world have been showing an increasing interest in the area of nanoscience. Nanotechnology is the research and development of materials, systems, and devices with properties different from those found on the scale of molecules and viruses (Patil et al). A branch of nanotechnology, called nanomedicine, holds strong promise of future medical advances in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of diseases (Patil et al). Nanomedicine is a science and technology which involves preventing traumatic injury, relieving pain, and maintaining human health (Patil et al). With nanomedicine it will be possible to extend a human’s life span by quickly repairing a variety of fatal physical injuries. Medical robots, or nanobots, will be able to efficiently cure the majority of the diseases that people suffer from today. Nanotechnology has the potential to become a core technology for not only modern medicine and dentistry, but others fields such as chemistry, physics, and engineering (Patil et al). Once scientists determine a system that eliminates the dangers of nanoscale materials and regenerative medicine, nanotechnology will without doubt become the fundamental technology of modern medicine.
Medical developments concerning nanotechnology have multiple uses and may potentially save thousands of lives. Nanomedicine is an emerging field which “involves maintaining cells, tissues, and organs by applying cell therapy and tissue engineering methods” (Patil et al). This often includes not only the use of a variety of nanoscale materials, but the rewriting or replacing of DNA sequences in cells (Patil et al). These procedures are mostly conducted by researchers involved in drug discovery as well as physicians looking for improved imaging techniques ("Nanotechnology and Medicine"). For example, a medicine called Doxil® was created to treat a range of cancer types. The technology is composed of lipid nanoparticles with a coating of polyethylene glycol. This coating prevents a reaction from the immune system once placed in the body, and allows the drugs inside of the technology to be delivered to the specific area carrying the disease ("Nanotechnology and Medicine"). Fortunately, nanotechnology is quickly becoming more active in medical fields in the form of “smart drugs.” Smart drugs are being used for targeted drug therapies, which are more effective and cause fewer side effects than traditional therapies. For example, an ancient infection treatment was reutilized when a burn and wound bandage was coated with reactive nanosize silver particles, which enter the skin and gradually heal the burn. As a result of this technology, burn victims require dressings changes much less often, sometimes only once per week (Patil et al).
Nanodiagnostics include the applications of nanotechnology in molecular diagnostics. They provide early disease identification at the cellular and molecular levels (Patil et al). Nanomedicine could be used to...

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