The U.S. National Nanotechnology Initiative (NNI) will hold a webinar on November 4, 2020, on “Implantable Nanosensors:  A Forward-Looking View on Technical and Non-Technical Challenges.”  According to NNI, implantable nanosensors could revolutionize healthcare and improve real-time health monitoring.  NNI states that while there have been significant advances in developing implantable sensors for monitoring and responding to tissue growth, infection, and inflammation surrounding implants, as well as communicating such responses to hand held devices for real-time responses, obstacles include the use of non-toxic sensor chemistries, information storage, healthcare privacy, and longevity of sensor function in the body.  The webinar will summarize some of these challenges, placing them into the context of the promise implantable sensors possess across all of medicine.  The speaker will be Dr. Thomas Webster, Art Zafiropoulo Chair in Engineering at Northeastern University’s Department of Chemical Engineering.  Dr. Webster’s research focuses on the use of self-assembled chemistries, nanoparticles, and nanostructured surfaces in the design, synthesis, and evaluation of nanomaterials for various medical applications.  His work targets health threats associated with bacteria-resistant surfaces, inflammation, and advances to promote tissue growth.  Dr. Webster is also developing in situ sensors that can sense biological responses to medical devices and respond in real time to ensure implant success.

The webinar is part of NNI’s Sensors Nanotechnology Signature Initiative (NSI) Webinar Series.  According to NNI, federal nanotechnology research and development programs have provided support for the development of sensor technology.  NNI agencies participating in the Sensors NSI coordinate efforts and stimulate existing and emerging projects to explore the use of nanotechnology for the development and commercialization of nanosensors.