Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Pure carbon nanotubes pass first in vivo test

30.11.2006
Nanotubes tracked in blood and liver: Study finds no adverse effects

In the first experiments of their kind, researchers at Rice University and The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center have determined that carbon nanotubes injected directly into the bloodstream of research lab animals cause no immediate adverse health effects and circulate for more than one hour before they are removed by the liver.

The findings are from the first in vivo animal study of chemically unmodified carbon nanotubes, a revolutionary nanomaterial that many researchers hope will prove useful in diagnosing and treating disease. The research will appear in this week's online edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

"We sampled tissues from a dozen organs, and found significant amounts of nanotubes only in the liver," said lead author Bruce Weisman, professor of chemistry. "The liver naturally removes drugs or compounds from the blood, so this is what we expected to find."

... more about:
»Carbon »Nanotubes »carbon nanotubes »liver

The study, which tracked where the nanotubes went within 24 hours of being injected, also revealed trace amounts of nanotubes in the kidneys – another common expulsion route for drugs. There was no evidence that nanotubes remained in other tissues in the body.

Nanotubes are hollow cylinders of pure carbon that measure just one nanometer in diameter – about the same width as a strand of DNA. Nanotubes have unique chemical and optical properties, and they have attracted intense interest from biomedical researchers.

"The early results are promising for anyone interested in using carbon nanotubes in biomedical applications," said co-author Dr. Steven Curley, professor of surgical oncology and chief of gastrointestinal tumor surgery at M. D. Anderson. "We are particularly pleased that the fluorescent effect remains intact in our application, because this makes it easier to see where the nanotubes end up, and it opens the door to some exciting diagnostic and therapeutic applications."

In a ground-breaking 2002 study, Weisman and colleagues at Rice, including the late Professor Richard Smalley, discovered that nanotubes fluoresce, or emit near infrared light. Because near-infrared light passes harmlessly into the body, biomedical researchers are keen to use carbon nanotubes for the noninvasive diagnosis and treatment of diseases such as cancer and atherosclerosis.

In the current study, Weisman, Curley and colleagues injected lab animals with water soluble single-walled carbon nanotubes. The nanotubes, whose biocompatible coating was displaced by proteins in the blood, continued to fluoresce in the animals.

"I still remember how excited we were when we confirmed that the tubes were fluorescing," said Paul Cherukuri, a doctoral degree candidate in Chemistry. The researchers used this fluorescence to track the nanotubes in the blood and image them in tissues under the microscope.

Cherukuri said Smalley initiated several follow-up projects shortly before his passing in 2005 from lymphoma. In one, researchers are working on methods that will allow nanotubes to circulate longer following injection, so that they can be more easily targeted to specific organs. In another, they are tracking the longer-term behavior and effects of nanotubes in research lab animals.

"This research grew out of Smalley’s vision, and he followed our progress and offered daily guidance, even from his hospital bed at M.D. Anderson," Cherukuri said. “Up to his very last day, he was simultaneously fighting his own battle with cancer and developing new ways to treat the disease that ultimately took his life. These new results are simply the first fruits of his final contributions in nanohealth research, and there are still more to come."

Jade Boyd | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.rice.edu

Further reports about: Carbon Nanotubes carbon nanotubes liver

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Multi-institutional collaboration uncovers how molecular machines assemble
02.12.2016 | Salk Institute

nachricht Fertilized egg cells trigger and monitor loss of sperm’s epigenetic memory
02.12.2016 | IMBA - Institut für Molekulare Biotechnologie der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften GmbH

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

Im Focus: Molecules change shape when wet

Broadband rotational spectroscopy unravels structural reshaping of isolated molecules in the gas phase to accommodate water

In two recent publications in the Journal of Chemical Physics and in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, researchers around Melanie Schnell from the Max...

Im Focus: Fraunhofer ISE Develops Highly Compact, High Frequency DC/DC Converter for Aviation

The efficiency of power electronic systems is not solely dependent on electrical efficiency but also on weight, for example, in mobile systems. When the weight of relevant components and devices in airplanes, for instance, is reduced, fuel savings can be achieved and correspondingly greenhouse gas emissions decreased. New materials and components based on gallium nitride (GaN) can help to reduce weight and increase the efficiency. With these new materials, power electronic switches can be operated at higher switching frequency, resulting in higher power density and lower material costs.

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE together with partners have investigated how these materials can be used to make power...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

UTSA study describes new minimally invasive device to treat cancer and other illnesses

02.12.2016 | Medical Engineering

Plasma-zapping process could yield trans fat-free soybean oil product

02.12.2016 | Agricultural and Forestry Science

What do Netflix, Google and planetary systems have in common?

02.12.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>