According to a group of researchers from Boston, a new species of "microworms" composed of nanotubes could give life to implantable sensors or drug delivery systems: we will thus be able to monitor the progress of a medical treatment and the conditions of our body .
These are tiny structures, equipped with a porous membrane and virtually able to house various types of materials or devices: the research carried out to date had led to nanomachines of different shapes, usually round, and this new 'filiform' structure will allow them to be better anchored to our body.
We are talking, it is worth remembering, of machines the size of a thousandth of a human hair, which do not cause, due to their size, any immune response in our body: that is, they are devoid of any rejection by our body.
Upcoming applications - Soon it will be possible to fill a 'nanotube' with substances that become fluorescent in particular chemical situations: injected into our body, they will allow immediate observation of areas of the body affected by biomedical phenomena or targeted treatments.
In the near future, diabetics will be able to check the blood sugar level on their own, in real time, perhaps looking in the mirror: great possibilities also open up for graduated-release drugs.
The research, led by MIT engineer Karen Gleason, was published in the magazine's recent issue Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.