Professor shows study on biomedical research and nano technology

Ben Theobald

 Younan Xia, a professor of biomedical engineering from Washington University in St. Louis, visited Iowa State, Thursday, gave a lecture at Durham Hall showcasing putting chemistry to work for nano and biomedical research.

Xia has done research for more than 10 years focusing on nanomaterials. Xia has been doing biomedical research since 2005.

  “About five years ago we got interest in exploring some of the biomedical applications,” Xia said.

  Xia hopes to improve medical technology to identify and treating types of cancer.

 “We would like to have better procedures for diagnosing and treatment of cancer,” Xia said. “Hopefully we can get new materials that can be more efficient in targeting cancer and used to treat cancer.”

 Xia showed that in his research he is working on using nanoparticles which can target cancer cells as well as eliminate the cancer cells.

 The nanotechnology can create light that can be converted into heat which can be conducted to the cancer cells. This raises the temperature of the cancer cells and eventually forces them to die, Xia said.

 These types of operations created by nanoparticles take a careful amount of research in order to be successful.

 “For this treatment to be effective you have to worry about the wavelengths of light you are going to use in order to penetrate softer tissues,” Xia said. “You have to find ways to make nanoparticles that will fit these particle applications.”

 Xia showed another study on how nanoparticles and biomedical research is being done to target and eliminates breast cancer cells.

 We are able to target the cancer cells and just after exposing them after a few seconds them to our nanoparticle technology we can tear them off and eliminate the cancer cells, Xia said.