Ongoing developments in molecular fabrication, computation, sensors and motors will enable the manufacturing of nanorobots – nanoscale biomolecular machine systems. The present work constitutes a novel simulation approach, intended to be a platform for the design and research of nanorobots control. The simulation approach involves a combined and multi-scale view of the scenario. Fluid dynamics numerical simulation is used to construct the nanorobotic environment, and an additional simulation models nanorobot sensing, control and behavior. We discuss some of the most promising possibilities for nanorobotics applications in biomedical problems, paying a special attention to a stenosed coronary artery case. Keywords: Biomedical computing, control systems, coronary stenosis, mobile robots, nanomedicine, nanorobots, nanotechnology.
This paper describes a study for developing nanorobotics control design to deal with many of the challenging problems in biomedical applications. The problem we consider here is mainly focused on nanomedicine , where the biomedical interventions and manipulations are automatically performed by nanorobots. While these nanorobots cannot be fabricated yet, theoretical and simulation studies defining design strategies, capabilities and limitations, will supply better comprehension of nanorobots behavior and the nanoworld . In recent years, the potential of a new interdisciplinary field of science has motivated many governments to devote significant resources to nanotechnology . The U.S. National Science Foundation has launched a program in “Scientific Visualization” , in part to harness supercomputers in picturing the nanoworld. A 1 trillion US$ market consisting of devices and systems with some embedded nanotechnology is projected by 2015 . The research firm DisplaySearch predicts rapid market growth of organic light emitting diodes, from 84 million US$ in 2002
2. MEDICAL NANOROBOTIC APPLICATIONS
Applications of nanorobots are expected to provide remarkable possibilities. An interesting utilization of nanorobots may be their attachment to transmigrating inflammatory cells or white blood cells, to reach inflamed tissues and assist in their healing process . Nanorobots will be applied in chemotherapy to combat cancer through precise chemical dosage administration, and a similar approach could be taken to enable nanorobots to deliver anti-HIV drugs. Such drug-delivery nanorobots have been termed “pharmacytes” by Freitas . Nanorobots could be used to process specific chemical reactions in the human body as ancillary devices for injured organs. Monitoring and controlling nutrient concentrations in the human body , including glucose levels in diabetic patients will be a possible application of medical nanorobots. Nanorobots might be used to seek and break kidney stones. Another important possible feature of medical nanorobots will be the capability to locate atherosclerotic lesions in stenosed blood vessels, particularly in the coronary circulation, and treat them either mechanically, chemically or pharmacologically . The coronary arteries are one of the most common sites for the localization of atherosclerotic plaques, although they could be found in other regions as well.