Carbon Nanotube Pumping for Drug Delivery

One exciting potential application of nanotechnology is to revolutionize the ways of drug delivery. A tiny nanostructure, such as a carbon nanotube (CNT) is small enough to cross the cell membrane and enter the nuclei of the cell, while the cell does not recognize the nanotube as an unfriendly intruder. Therefore, a CNT can be used effectively as a vehicle to deliver drugs to the targeted sick cell (such as a cancer cell) with unprecedented accuracy and efficiency.

The uptake of drug molecules from a solution into a CNT can be achieved automatically by Van der Waals attraction between the nanotube and drug molecules. But a mechanism for a CNT to release the drug is lacking. This video shows a new nanopumping process for a CNT to release a C-20 molecule, as a prototype device for drug delivery. An oscillating tip actuator generates a sustained mechanical wave in the CNT, which acts like a nanopump to drive and eject the 'drug' molecule out of the tube.

Run time 1.09 mins

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