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Thermal ablation therapeutics based on CNx multi-walled nanotubes

International Journal of Nanomedicine
Dove Medical Press
Publication Date
  • Original Research
  • Physics


We demonstrate that nitrogen doped, multi-walled carbon nanotubes (CNx-MWNT) result in photo-ablative destruction of kidney cancer cells when excited by near infrared (NIR) irradiation. Further, we show that effective heat transduction and cellular cytotoxicity depends on nanotube length: effective NIR coupling occurs at nanotube lengths that exceed half the wavelength of the stimulating radiation, as predicted in classical antenna theory. We also demonstrate that this radiation heats the nanotubes through induction processes, resulting in significant heat transfer to surrounding media and cell killing at extraordinarily small radiation doses. This cell death was attributed directly to photothermal effect generated within the culture, since neither the infrared irradiation itself nor the CNx-MWNT were toxic to the cells.

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