with Lorelle and Brent VanFossen

Nanotech Moves Closer to Cure for Cancers and More

While our site is about travel, nature photography, and life on the road, and the use of the computer to make life easier on the road, every once in a while I stumble across a piece of news that is so exciting, I just have to share it. Wired News reports Nanotech Moves Closer to Cure for Cancer and other diseases. I’ve been following nanotechnology for the bio industry for a few years and this is really exciting stuff.

Instead of using live viruses to destroy diseased cells, why not send in man-made, nanoscale molecules with tiny tendrils that scientists could engineer to battle specific types of cancers?

Remember, this was the early ’90s. Few had even heard of the internet, much less “nanotechnology,” which was then firmly the domain of futurists, and certainly not on the radar of respectable beaker slingers.

“In fact, there was a lot of derision at NIH (National Institutes of Health) that this was not real science,” Baker recalls. “But as it became clear that gene therapy was not going anywhere without different approaches, I think the reality of, the necessity of, bioengineering in this process became clear.”

Today, the National Cancer Institute is on its way to becoming a Nano Cancer Institute as it prepares to spend $144.3 million over five years on the engineered nanoparticles “approach” that Baker and just a few others had championed more than a decade ago. As for Baker, he’s doing rather well in his corner office at the Center for Biologic Nanotechnology with a panoramic view of downtown Ann Arbor, Michigan.

Star Trek-technology is on the horizon and I hope we can all benefit from it soon.

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