Age-related nanostructural and nanomechanical changes of individual human cartilage aggrecan monomers and their glycosaminoglycan side chains Citation
- Lee, Hsu-Yi, +8 authors Christine Ortizb
While living matter is composed of a large number of biologic nanomachines, it has been recognized early in the history of nanotechnology that medicine could be a prime field for application. Now that nanotechnology has gone beyond its infancy, its mature armamentarium of tools, methods and materials is ready for applications outside physics. While true clinical applications of nanotechnology are still practically inexistent at the current time, a significant number of promising medical projects is in an advanced experimental stage. Tools based on the atomic force microscope will not only allow improved imaging of living matter but can also serve as functional probe and will even serve as a sensitive sensor for a broad range of molecules that are of medical interest. New immunological tests based on microcontact printing and microfluidics will significantly improve medical laboratory diagnosis. New materials, including nanotubes and fullerenes, nanocontainers and other self-assembled structures may improve mechanical properties and biocompatibility of implants and will allow new approaches in drug targeting.