Buckyballs, the soccer ball-shaped carbon nanoparticles, have shown promise for applications in medicine, but how they are created is a mystery.
Researchers from the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute in Roanoke, Va., however, may have uncovered a clue, as they have reported the first experimental evidence supporting the theory that a buckyball is formed from the breakdown of larger structures rather than being built up atom-by-atom.
The discovery could have implications for imaging. Buckyballs can trap atoms of metal inside them, and one with gadolinium at its core has demonstrated a 40-fold improvement as a contrast agent for MRI compared with commercially available options.
For more on this research, check out the article below from Virginia Tech: