Considered futuristic a just a few years ago, nanotechnology – where scientists utilize nano-sized objects measuring less than 1/100,000 the width of a human hair – today is showing great promise in areas such as medicine, materials science and defense technology.
The Technion’s Russell Berrie Nanotechnology Institute is a world-leader in nanotechnology research having made seminal discoveries in the field.
Breakthroughs in Nanotechnology
Prof. Ester Segal and a team of Israeli and American researchers find that silicon nanomaterials used for the localized delivery of chemotherapy drugs behave differently in cancerous tumors than they do in healthy tissues. The findings could help scientists better design such materials to facilitate the controlled and targeted release of the chemotherapy drugs to tumors.
Associate Professor Alex Leshansky of the Faculty of Chemical Engineering is part of an international team that has created a tiny screw-shaped propeller that can move in a gel-like fluid, mimicking the environment in a living organism. The breakthrough brings closer the day robots that are only nanometers – billionths of a meter – in length, can maneuver and perform medicine inside the human body and possibly inside human cells.
Prof. Amit Miller and a team of researchers at the Technion and Boston University have discovered a simple way to control the passage of DNA molecules through nanopore sensors. The breakthrough could lead to low-cost, ultra-fast DNA sequencing that would revolutionize healthcare and biomedical research, and spark major advances in drug development, preventative medicine and personalized medicine.