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Circulation. 2003 Dec 2;108(22):2737-42.

Recommendations of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute Nanotechnology Working Group.

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  • 1Division of Heart and Vascular Diseases, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, Bethesda, Md, USA.


Recent rapid advances in nanotechnology and nanoscience offer a wealth of new opportunities for diagnosis and therapy of cardiovascular, pulmonary, and hematologic diseases and sleep disorders. To review the challenges and opportunities offered by these nascent fields, the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute convened a Working Group on Nanotechnology. Working Group participants discussed the various aspects of nanotechnology and its applications to heart, lung, blood, and sleep (HLBS) diseases. This report summarizes their discussions according to scientific opportunities, perceived needs and barriers, specific disease examples, and recommendations on facilitating research in the field. An overarching recommendation of the Working Group was to focus on translational applications of nanotechnology to solve clinical problems. The Working Group recommended the creation of multidisciplinary research centers capable of developing applications of nanotechnology and nanoscience to HLBS research and medicine. Centers would also disseminate technology, materials, and resources and train new investigators. Individual investigators outside these centers should be encouraged to conduct research on the application of nanotechnology to biological and clinical problems. Pilot programs and developmental research are needed to attract new investigators and to stimulate creative, high-impact research. Finally, encouragement of small businesses to develop nanotechnology-based approaches to clinical problems was considered important.

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