Nanotechnology’s bright future has finally come up with a possible treatment for the dreaded pimples of our teen years. That has arrived in the form of gold nano-bombs which deliver a lethal dose of lauric acid to skin-dwelling bacteria responsible for that unsightly acne, according to UPI.
Lauric acid can convert into a compound which essentially destroys the outer lipid walls of bacteria, and is found in coconut oil and human breast milk. Bioengineers at the University of California-San Diego packaged the lauric acid inside of artificial microscopic sacs to become bacteria-busting nano-bombs.
Gold nanoparticles studding the outside of the nano-bombs prevent the sacs from fusing together, and also help them act as smart bombs to track down bacteria based on the skin’s pH level and other microenvironment factors.
The nano-bomb liposomes shed their gold nanoparticles once they reach the acidic microenvironment of the bacterial membranes, and allow the lauric acid to do their dirty work and help clear up acne.
Such nanoparticles have also helped other researchers aim their lasers at brain parasites responsible for “crazy cat lady” syndrome. But we hope that researchers are keeping an eye out for any potential safety issues with applying gold nanoparticles to human faces.