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Journal of Healthcare Engineering
Volume 4 (2013), Issue 1, Pages 67-86
Research Article

Perspectives of Nanotechnology in Minimally Invasive Therapy of Breast Cancer

Yamin Yang and Hongjun Wang

Chemistry, Chemical Biology and Biomedical Engineering, Stevens Institute of Technology, Hoboken, NJ 07030, USA

Received 1 September 2012; Accepted 1 November 2012

Copyright © 2013 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Breast cancer, the most common type of cancer among women in the western world, affects approximately one out of every eight women over their lifetime. In recognition of the high invasiveness of surgical excision and severe side effects of chemical and radiation therapies, increasing efforts are made to seek minimally invasive modalities with fewer side effects. Nanoparticles (<100 nm in size) have shown promising capabilities for delivering targeted therapeutic drugs to cancer cells and confining the treatment mainly within tumors. Additionally, some nanoparticles exhibit distinct properties, such as conversion of photonic energy into heat, and these properties enable eradication of cancer cells. In this review, current utilization of nanostructures for cancer therapy, especially in minimally invasive therapy, is summarized with a particular interest in breast cancer.