Nanotechnology: The Cutting Edge of Medical Interventions; Research Paper
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To rebuild damaged parts of a human body from scratch is a dream that has long fired human imagination, from Mary Shelley's Doctor Frankenstein to modern day surgeons. Now, a team of European scientists, working in the frame of the EUREKA project ModPolEUV, has made a promising contribution to reconstructive surgery thanks to an original multidisciplinary approach matching cutting-edge medicine to the latest developments in nanotechnology. Read more: Nanotechnology's contribution to reconstructive surgery.
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Researchers have developed a biodegradable thin film of only about 20 nanometers thickness that could replace surgical stitches. The ultra-thin PLLA nanosheet has an excellent sealing efficacy for gastric incision as a novel wound dressing that does not require adhesive agents.
Furthermore, the sealing operation repaired the incision completely without scars and tissue adhesion. Read more: Plastic surgeons' dream? Scar-free surgery with nanotechnology sealant. As a surgical specialty that heavily relies on technological innovations, it is expected that neurosurgery will significantly benefit from several graphene-based technological developments in the next decades. Read more about a primer on this topic: Graphene has potential to reshape neurosurgery.
Researchers have developed a way to selectively insert compounds into cancer cells — a system that will help surgeons identify malignant tissues and then, in combination with phototherapy, kill any remaining cancer cells after a tumor is removed. It's about as simple as, "If it glows, cut it out.
Interesting new nanotechnology books in October
Read more: 'Glowing' new nanotechnology guides cancer surgery, also kills remaining malignant cells. This is another example from the labs that demonstrates a way for nanotechnology to kill cancer cells. A new system to improve cancer surgery uses a nanoparticle called a dendrimer to carry a drug into cancer cells, that can set the stage for improved surgery and also phototherapy.
Image: Oregon State University. Although various methods of biofilm control exist, these methods are not without limitations and often fail to remove biofilms from surfaces. Biofilms often show reduced susceptibility to antimicrobials or chemicals and chemical by-products may be toxic to the environment, whereas mechanical methods may be labour intensive and expensive due to down-time required to clean the system. This has led to a great interest in the enzymatic degradation of biofilms.
A tool for cell engineering
Enzymes are highly selective and disrupt the structural stability of the biofilm EPS matrix. Various studies have focused on the enzymatic degradation of polysaccharides and proteins for biofilm detachment since these are the two dominant components of the EPS. Due to the structural role of proteins and polysaccharides in the EPS matrix, a combination of various proteases and polysaccharases may be successful in biofilm removal.
The biodegradability and low toxicity of enzymes also make them attractive biofilm control agents. Regardless of all the advantages associated with enzymes, they also suffer from various drawbacks given that they are relatively expensive, show insufficient stability or activity under certain conditions, and cannot be reused. Various approaches are being used to increase the stability of enzymes, including enzyme modification, enzyme immobilization, protein engineering and medium engineering.
Although these conventional methods have been used frequently to improve the stability of enzymes, various new techniques, such as self-immobilization of enzymes, the immobilization of enzymes on nano-scale structures and the production of single-enzyme nanoparticles, have been developed. Self-immobilization of enzymes entails the cross-linking of enzyme molecules with each other and yields final preparations consisting of essentially pure proteins and high concentrations of enzyme per unit volume.
The activity, stability and efficiency of immobilized enzymes can be improved by reducing the size of the enzyme-carrier. Nano-scale carrier materials allow for high enzyme loading per unit mass, catalytic recycling and a reduced loss of enzyme activity.
Furthermore, enzymes can be stabilized by producing single-enzyme nanoparticles consisting of single-enzyme molecules surrounded by a porous organic-inorganic network of less than a few nanometers thick. All these new technologies of enzyme stabilization make enzymes even more attractive alternatives to other biofilm removal and control agents.
Nanofiltration for Water and Wastewater Treatment.
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Nanofiltration NF is a new type of pressure driven membrane process and used between reverse osmosis and ultrafiltration membranes. The most different speciality of NF membranes is the higher rejection of multivalent ions than monovalent ions. NF membranes are used in softening water, brackish water treatment, industrial wastewater treatment and reuse, product separation in the industry, salt recovery and recently desalination as two pass NF system.here
In this chapter, a general overview of nanofiltration membranes, membrane materials and manufacturing techniques, principles such as performance and modelling, module types, membrane characterization and applications on water and wastewater treatment were given. Jesus Hierrezuelo, Elena Garrido and J. This chapter provides a review about the membrane separation technologies focusing on reverse osmosis hyperfiltration and nanofiltration.
The first one is based on the basic principle of osmotic pressure, while the latter makes use of molecule size for separation. Recent advances on nanotechnology are opening a range of possibilities in membrane technologies.
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This chapter also reviews some of these aspects: new membrane preparation and cleaning methods, new surface and interior modification possibilities, the use of new nanostructured materials, and new characterization techniques. Electrospinning Nanofibers for Water Treatment Applications.
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Electrospinning is a highly versatile technique that can be used to create ultrafine fibres of various polymers and other materials, with diameters ranging from a few micrometers down to tens of nanometres. The nonwoven webs of fibers formed through this process typically have high specific surface areas, nano-scale pore sizes, high and controllable porosity and extreme flexibility with regard to the materials used and modification of the surface chemistry of the fibres.
This chapter describes the combination of these features in the application of electrospun nanofibres in a variety of water treatment applications, including filtration, solid phase extraction and reactive membranes. The risk assessment of nanoparticles and nanomaterials is of key importance for the continous development in the already striving new field of nanotechnology.
Humans are increasingly being exposed to nanoparticles and nanomaterials, placing stress on the development and validation of reproducible toxicity tests.