The Future of Nanomedicine

What a nanotechnology research center looks like 

Image by adamgreenfield via Flickr

Nanotechnology is very popular. It has been used in science fiction, from The X-Files and Fringe to countless books, comics, and movies. It has also enjoyed plenty of media coverage and many people talk about how interesting the field of nanotechnology is. But, what possibilities do nanotechnology really open?

Nanotechnology has possible applications in many fields, but one of the most promising fields is medicine. Medical nanotechnology, or Nanomedicine, could be used to drastically increase the effectiveness of medicine and decrease the cost, as well as decreasing the amount of suffering or discomfort a patient must experience in treatment. Nanomedicine may also be useful in treating previously untreatable issues, or in developing new, better treatments for issues.

One conceived use of Nanomedicine is in diagnostics. Nanotechnology could make it much easier to identify problems in patients. This could be done through the use of engineered antibodies that identify diseases.

Nanomedicine will also be useful in drug delivery. Nanotechnology could take small amounts of drugs to specific cells, reducing the costs and discomfort of treatment. The decrease in medicine used can also help distribute medicine to larger groups of people, in cases where a vaccine or treatment is scarce.

Nanomedicine is also being researched for its use in Tissue Engineering. Nanomaterials could potentially be used to repair or reproduce body tissues. Tissue Engineering in this fashion could potentially replace organ transplants and artificial implants.

Nanomedicine might not be useable yet, but it is not simply fantasy anymore. Nanomedicine will hopefully be in widespread use very soon and will undoubtedly save many lives once it is in use.