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March 17th, 2006

Particle Size Matters

Vicki Colvin has a question for colleagues who study nanoparticles and how they may affect people and the environment. "Exactly what do you mean by size?" "We want to know how particle size changes as it marches through the body," Colvin said at a workshop designed to identify roadblocks to nanobiotech commercialization. Size, composition, shape and other characteristics help distinguish the scores of different engineered nanoparticles that exist today. They also help determine their wanted – and unwanted – properties. "Can I take a material that is active (potentially harmful) and make it safe?" she asked. "How can I engineer a safe nanoparticle?"


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