Volume 4 Number 7 July 2018
Cancer and Carbon Nano Tubes: A Promising Hope of Future
Authors: Satish Kumar Samal
One way to alleviate the terrible side effects of chemotherapy is to find a way to better control what cells are needed to be targeted by the drugs in cancer patients. By being able to target only the cancerous cells within the body, less chemotherapy drugs would need to be injected into the patient for cancer treatment, thus reducing, if not completely wiping away, the side effects of the chemotherapy drugs. Cancer researchers have figured out a method that better delivers drugs, such as chemotherapy drugs, to cancer cells without damaging surrounding healthy ones, by discovering a way to use single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) as targeted medicinal delivery mediums. For how small they are, their inner volumes are relatively large, leaving enough space to carry drugs into the body. Both the inner and outer surfaces of SWCNTs can be easily modified for “functionalization”. Their small size nature allows them to enter the nuclei of cells freely. Most importantly, single-walled carbon nanotubes are completely safe and nontoxic and proven to be stable to use in inserting and transporting drugs into the body. Presently, carbon nanotubes are not only being used as drug delivery systems, but as a means of directly killing malignant cells within the body. All of these applications of CNTs makes it promising and would lead to great advances in medicine in the future.