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An IIT Kharagpur alumnus may have revolutionised root canal with nano robots

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An IIT Kharagpur alumnus may have revolutionised root canal with nano robots

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An IISc-incubated startup and a group of researchers at the premier academic institute have developed nano-sized bots that can better root canal treatments by killing bacteria deep inside dentinal tubules

An IIT Kharagpur alumnus may have revolutionised root canal with nano robots
An Indian Institute of Science (IISc)-incubated start-up and a group of researchers at the premier academic institute in Bengaluru have developed nano-sized bots that can kill bacteria deep inside dentinal tubules boosting root canal treatments.
The group of researchers at the IISc and Theranautilus, a start-up led by Ambarish Ghosh, professor at Centre for Nano Science and Engineering (CeNSE) and an IIT Kharagpur alumnus, has shown that nano-sized robots controlled by a magnetic field can boost the success of root canal treatments by killing bacteria inside microscopic canals in the teeth, known as dentinal tubules.
In root canal treatments, the pulp or the infected tissue inside the tooth is removed and the tooth is flushed with chemicals and antibiotics to kill the germs causing the infections. Despite flushing, some antibiotic-resistant bacteria remain in the dentinal tubules.
The nanobots are able to penetrate deep inside the dentinal tubules and generate heat, killing the bacteria nearby, the researchers said in a study published in Advanced Healthcare Materials.
This was possible because of the helical nanobots could be manipulated with a device that generates a low-intensity magnetic field.
“Current techniques are not efficient enough to go all the way inside and kill the bacteria,” IANS quoted Shanmukh Srinivas, co-founder of Theranautilus and research associate at IISc, as saying.
The nanobots are made of silicon dioxide coated with iron. The researchers tested the bots and tracked their movement with a microscope on extracted tooth samples.
Dental professionals earlier used ultrasound or laser pulse irrigation methods to generate shockwaves in the fluid to better disinfect the microorganisms in the tooth.
However, the pulses were only able to penetrate up to a distance of 800 micrometres before dissipating the energy. Compared to the pulses, the nanobots were able to penetrate up to 2,000 micrometres.
Another advantage for the use of nanobots is that it is safer to use heat to kill the germs that harsh chemicals or antibiotics, the researchers said.
(With  inputs from Kamalika Sengupta from News18 in Kolkata.)
 
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