X-ray Nanochemistry
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Proposed mechanism for Chemical Enhacement

We discovered that small gold nanoparticles can be used to redirect X-ray energies deposited in them in aqueous solution. The energy deposition density immediately outside 3-nm gold nanoparticles can be greater than the water in the background. This means that if we can place these nanomaterials next to the biological targets, they will cause enhanced energy deposition and possible high concentration of reactive oxygen species such as OH radicals that can cause DNA strand breaks and other damages. We have experimentally observed such enhanced damage to supercoiled DNA molecules. We are investigating many related processes, as well as developing methods with which we can treat cancer cells with reduced damage to health cells.
 

References

Carter, J.D., N.N. Cheng, Y. Qu, G. D. Suarez and T. Guo; Nanoscale Energy Deposition by X-ray Absorbing Nanostructures, J. Phys. Chem. B, 111 (Letters) 11622 (2007).

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