By Dr. Brian McDonough, Medical Editor
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Nanotechnology is fascinating. We have talked about it before.
Nanotechnology is the management of structures at the molecular level. The best use is in cancer research and treatment where attempts are made to package anti-cancer genes in very small particles that are only taken up by cancer cells. This leaves healthy cells unharmed.
Once the genes are taken up, they force the cell to produce proteins that kill the cancer. Work like this has been done in mice, and researchers are hopeful it might be attempted in humans sometime soon.
The approach may be particularly useful for people with cancers that are inoperable because they are close to vital organs such as the brain or the lungs.
It is revolutionary and what was once a dream of scientists with excellent imaginations has become a reality. It is certainly one of the greater inventions that could make a big difference in health care.