Nanotubes, nanofibers tested as anticancer delivery depots

Despite the efforts of some anti-nanotech groups to paint carbon nanotubes as hazardous to human health, the reality is that they increasingly show promise as drug-delivery devices. The latest proof of that comes from researchers in Germany who showed that tubular nanomaterials, such as carbon nanotubes and carbon nanofibers, are promising delivery agents for anticancer drugs.

The researchers used the materials as drug depots to deliver the anti-cancer drug carboplatin in vitro. The result: No significant intrinsic toxicity of unloaded materials was found, confirming their biocompatibility. And carboplatin that was delivered by carbon nanotubes exhibited higher anticancer activity than free carboplatin.

It's not anything conclusive. But that's the way science works. One study builds upon another. It sounds like a better method of determining carbon nanotube toxicity than the anti-nano groups' method of declaring all nanomaterials to be toxic.

- read the abstract here