By Cameron Chai
There are a number of questions about nanomedicine that need to be answered, whether this emerging technology is capable of detecting and treating diseases through innovative methods or may harm the human body by releasing harmful nanorobots, nanoparticles and nanoelectronic devices.
A new review paper of over 500 studies on the nanomedicine field concludes that neither situation is true. The paper has been written by Rogerio Gaspar and Ruth Duncan and is published in Molecular Pharmaceutics, a journal of the American Chemical Society.
The authors describe that nanomedicine, which means applying nanotechnology to medicine is often is believed as a potential threat or a cure-all. Nanomedicine was introduced with the hope that nanoelectronic devices and robots, which are minuscule and dozens of such devices can be arranged across a human hair’s width, can be developed and placed into the human body to diagnose and treat diseases and fix damaged organs. Around 40 nanoscience-enabled healthcare products are already in use and several imaging agents, drug delivery devices, nano-sized drugs and more in the pipeline.
In the review paper, the authors first explain the nanomedicine history and several nanomedicine products are offered in the marketplace. Then, they recommend ways to reduce risks and improve benefits of nanomedicines during the drug development stage. Finally, the authors suggest key factors important for the advancement of practical, safe and efficient nanomedical technology.