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Nanomedicine: Nanotechnology, Biology, and Medicine 3 (2007) 20 – 31

Clinical Nanomedicine

The present and future of nanotechnology in human health care
S.K. Sahoo, PhD4, S. Parveen, MS, J.J. Panda, MS
Institute of Life Sciences, Nanomedicine Laboratory, Chandrasekharpur, Bhubaneswar, Orissa, India Received 3 March 2006; revised 4 October 2006; accepted 21 November2006


Nanotechnology is a multidisciplinary field that covers a vast and diverse array of devices derived from engineering, physics, chemistry, and biology. The burgeoning new field of nanotechnology, opened up by rapid advances in science and technology, creates myriad new opportunities for advancing medical science and disease treatment in human health care. Applications ofnanotechnology to medicine and physiology imply materials and devices designed to interact with the body at subcellular (i.e., molecular) scales with a high degree of specificity. This can be potentially translated into targeted cellular and tissue-specific clinical applications designed to achieve maximal therapeutic efficacy with minimal side effects. In this review the chief scientific and technicalaspects of nanotechnology are introduced, and some of its potential clinical applications are discussed. D 2007 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Nanotechnology; Nanomedicine; Drug delivery; Nanodiagnostic; Molecular imaging

Key words:

Nanotechnology can be defined as the science and engineering involved in the design, synthesis, characterization and application of materials and deviceswhose smallest functional organization in at least one dimension is on the nanometer scale (one-billionth of a meter) [1,2]. In the past few years nanotechnology has grown by leaps and bounds, and this multidisciplinary scientific field is undergoing explosive development [3-6]. It can prove to be a boon for human health care, because nanoscience and nanotechnologies have a huge potential to bringbenefits in areas as diverse as drug development, water decontamination, information and communication technologies, and the production of stronger, lighter materials. Human health-care nanotechnology research can definitely result in immense health benefits. The genesis of nanotechnology can be traced to the promise of revolutionary advances across medicine, communications, genomics, and robotics.A complete list of the potential applications of nanotechnology
No conflict of interest was reported by the authors of this paper. 4 Corresponding author. Institute of Life Sciences, Nanomedicine Laboratory, Chandrasekharpur, Bhubaneswar, Orissa, India. E-mail address: (S.K. Sahoo). 1549-9634/$ – see front matter D 2007 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.doi:10.1016/j.nano.2006.11.008

is too vast and diverse to discuss in detail, but without doubt, one of the greatest values of nanotechnology will be in the development of new and effective medical treatments [1,7-10]. This review focuses on the potential of nanotechnology in medicine, including the development of nanoparticles for drug and gene delivery and diagnostics. These technologies will extend thelimits of current molecular diagnostics and permit accurate diagnosis as well as the development of personalized medicine. Background of nanotechnology The prefix bnanoQ derives from the Greek word for bdwarf.Q One nanometer (nm) is equal to one-billionth of a meter, or about the width of 6 carbon atoms or 10 water molecules. A human hair is approximately 80,000 nm wide, and a red blood cell isapproximately 7000 nm wide. Atoms are smaller than 1 nm, whereas many molecules including some proteins range between 1 nm and larger [11]. The conceptual underpinnings of nanotechnologies were first laid out in 1959 by the physicist Richard Feynman in his lecture, bThere’s plenty of room at the bottom.Q Feynman explored the possibility of manipulating material at the scale

S.K. Sahoo et al. /...
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