Cancer and Carbon Nanotubes - Method for Treating Cancer using Nanotechnology

Hongjie Dai is a chemist at Stanford University. He and his team of researchers have developed a method for treating cancer using carbon nanotubes, synthetic rods so tiny that thousands could fit in a single cell. The team coats carbon nanotubes in the B-vitamin folate. In that way they can fit the nanotubes to the numerous folate receptors present on cancer cells.

An interesting property of carbon nanotubes is that they absorb near-infrared radiation. This causes them to heat up very quickly. Once the nanotube is attached to the cancer cells, Dai uses a near-infrared laser beam to heat the nanotubes until they kill the cancer cells.

The method is still at a very early stage of testing. It will likely be two or more years before it is tested in clinical trials with human patients.

Run time 1.39 mins

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