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Cancer nanotechnology: current status and perspectives


Modern medicine has been waging a war on cancer for nearly a century with no tangible end in sight. Cancer treatments have significantly progressed, but the need to increase specificity and decrease systemic toxicities remains. Early diagnosis holds a key to improving prognostic outlook and patient quality of life, and diagnostic tools are on the cusp of a technological revolution. Nanotechnology has steadily expanded into the reaches of cancer chemotherapy, radiotherapy, diagnostics, and imaging, demonstrating the capacity to augment each and advance patient care. Nanomaterials provide an abundance of versatility, functionality, and applications to engineer specifically targeted cancer medicine, accurate early-detection devices, robust imaging modalities, and enhanced radiotherapy adjuvants. This review provides insights into the current clinical and pre-clinical nanotechnological applications for cancer drug therapy, diagnostics, imaging, and radiation therapy.

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