Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Revolutionary 'metamaterial' has potential to reshape neurosurgery

Date:
April 25, 2014
Source:
Wolters Kluwer Health: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins
Summary:
The development of graphene -— a highly advanced metamaterial with many unique and varied properties -— may lead to exciting new applications in the diagnosis and treatment of neurological diseases, according to a report. The authors write, "As a surgical specialty that heavily relies on technological innovations, it is expected that neurosurgery will significantly benefit from several graphene-based technological developments in the next decades."

The development of graphene -- a highly advanced metamaterial with many unique and varied properties -- may lead to exciting new applications in the diagnosis and treatment of neurological diseases, according to a report in the May issue of Neurosurgery, official journal of the Congress of Neurological Surgeons. The journal is published by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, a part of Wolters Kluwer Health.

Tobias A. Mattei, MD, of Invision Health/Brain & Spine Center -- Buffalo, New York and Azeem A. Rehman, BS, of The University of Illinois College of Medicine at Peoria present a "primer" on the development of graphene-based metamaterials that may lead to new advances in several areas of neurosurgery. Mattei and Rehman write, "As a surgical specialty that heavily relies on technological innovations, it is expected that neurosurgery will significantly benefit from several graphene-based technological developments in the next decades."

Graphene Has 'Extremely Remarkable' Properties

An artificially engineered "metamaterial" -- with properties not typically found in nature -- graphene is composed of a single layer of carbon atoms in a "honeycomb lattice" pattern. The developers of graphene were awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2010; massive resources are being invested in its further research and development.

Graphene has a number of "extremely remarkable" properties that make it unlike any other material. It combines the greatest mechanical strength ever measured in any material -- natural or artificial -- with very light weight and high elasticity. Graphene also has unique optical and photothermal properties which, among other things, allow it to release energy in the form of heat in response to light input.

In addition, graphene has very high electrical conductivity, as well as a high surface area allowing "efficient bioconjugation" with common biomolecules. A few years ago, graphene was one of the most expensive materials on Earth. However, as industrial production increases, it is dropping rapidly in price.

Graphene is being developed for use in a wide range of technologies, such as flexible liquid crystal displays and electronic devices, new types of integrated electric circuits, and lithium-ion microbatteries -- to name just a few. It also has great promise for use in various types of biomedical devices, several of which are relevant to conditions treated by neurosurgeons.

Many Promising Applications in Neurosurgery

Mattei and Rehman discuss some of the frontline scientific research being done to explore the capabilities and potential uses of graphene. As development continues, graphene-based metamaterials could contribute to advances in several areas of neurosurgery, including: • Cancer Treatment. Graphene nanoparticles may play a role in tumor-targeted imaging, as well as possible new therapeutic approaches involving photothermal or alternating electrical field stimulation therapies. • Intensive Care Unit Monitoring. New electrochemical and optical biosensors may provide new approaches to neurologic monitoring in patients with stroke or traumatic brain injury. • Neuroregeneration. Graphene materials may be used in new strategies to promote regeneration of nervous system tissues -- for example, graphene-coated scaffolds to stimulate growth of injured peripheral nerves. • Functional Neurosurgery. Improved electrophysiological monitoring systems may help in performing precisely targeted brain surgeries in patients with conditions such as epilepsy and movement disorders. • Spinal Surgery. High-resistance graphene-based hardware may represent the next generation in instrumentation for spinal surgery.

However, much work remains before any of these advances become reality. While graphene has been shown to be biocompatible, more basic research is needed to examine the long-term biological effects of graphene implants and to answer other important clinical questions. Mattei and Rehman conclude, "Increased awareness of the ongoing frontline research on graphene may enable the neurosurgical community to properly take advantage of the technological applications such a new metamaterial may offer to experimental and clinical neurosurgery in the near future."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Wolters Kluwer Health: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Tobias A. Mattei, Azeem A. Rehman. Technological Developments and Future Perspectives on Graphene-Based Metamaterials. Neurosurgery, 2014; 74 (5): 499 DOI: 10.1227/NEU.0000000000000302

Cite This Page:

Wolters Kluwer Health: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. "Revolutionary 'metamaterial' has potential to reshape neurosurgery." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 25 April 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/04/140425162310.htm>.
Wolters Kluwer Health: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. (2014, April 25). Revolutionary 'metamaterial' has potential to reshape neurosurgery. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 27, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/04/140425162310.htm
Wolters Kluwer Health: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. "Revolutionary 'metamaterial' has potential to reshape neurosurgery." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/04/140425162310.htm (accessed August 27, 2014).

Share This




More Matter & Energy News

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Australian Airlines Relax Phone Ban Too

Australian Airlines Relax Phone Ban Too

Reuters - Business Video Online (Aug. 26, 2014) Qantas and Virgin say passengers can use their smartphones and tablets throughout flights after a regulator relaxed a ban on electronic devices during take-off and landing. As Hayley Platt reports the move comes as the two domestic rivals are expected to post annual net losses later this week. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Hurricane Marie Brings Big Waves to California Coast

Hurricane Marie Brings Big Waves to California Coast

Reuters - US Online Video (Aug. 26, 2014) Huge waves generated by Hurricane Marie hit the Southern California coast. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Chinese Researchers Might Be Creating Supersonic Submarine

Chinese Researchers Might Be Creating Supersonic Submarine

Newsy (Aug. 26, 2014) Chinese researchers have expanded on Cold War-era tech and are closer to building a submarine that could reach the speed of sound. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Breakingviews: India Coal Strained by Supreme Court Ruling

Breakingviews: India Coal Strained by Supreme Court Ruling

Reuters - Business Video Online (Aug. 26, 2014) An acute coal shortage is likely to be aggravated as India's supreme court declared government coal allocations illegal, says Breakingviews' Peter Thal Larsen. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins