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Nanotechnology


The market for graphene used in medical applications is projected to grow at a CAGR of 39.1% through 2026.

 

Graphene was first isolated from graphite in 2004 by Prof. Andre Geim and Prof. Kostya Novoselov at the University of Manchester in the U.K. Since then, this one-atom-thick carbon allotrope with a hexagonal honeycomb structure has been rapidly gaining attention worldwide for its unique structure and properties.

 

Various methods are available for producing graphene. They are summarized in the table below, based on popularity. Popularity has been calculated based on the share of global patents and patent applications published during the past 20 years for that particular production method.

 

 

Most of the existing fabrication methods are unable to produce graphene in large quantities without compromising its intrinsic characteristics, thus contributing to the high unit price of this material.  In recent years, roll-to-roll and plasma-enhanced CVD processes, and liquid-phase exfoliation have been developed to manufacture graphene on a mass scale.

 

Graphene is presently sold primarily as mono-, bi-, and few-layer coatings (e.g., on copper foil, silica substrate, or polymer film); nanostructures (e.g., nanoplatelets, quantum dots, and nanoribbons); and graphene oxide powder.

 

At the present time, graphene is chiefly used for applications within the electronics (including optoelectronics), composites, and energy sectors, for fabrication of devices such as supercapacitors, batteries, organic photovoltaic cells, high-strength composites, touch screens, liquid crystal displays, and organic light-emitting diodes. A number of applications are also emerging within the medical field.

 

As shown in the next figure, graphene exhibits various relevant properties, such as high conductivity (electrons move faster than in other materials), flexibility and elasticity, biocompatibility, and antimicrobial properties. All these properties make graphene (and its oxide) suitable for different types of applications within the healthcare sector. They can be grouped according to five main categories: sensors, implants and scaffolds, imaging and testing, therapies, and others.

 

 

The global graphene market is estimated to be valued at $31.3 million in 2016 and forecast to grow at a 45.7% CAGR during the next 10 years, exceeding global revenues of  $1.3 billion by 2026. Graphene for medical applications is estimated to account for just 2.2% of the global market in 2016. Growing at a CAGR of 39.1%, graphene for the healthcare sector is projected to generate global revenues of $18.7 million in 2026. Sensors and therapies will account for nearly 70% of the market.

 

 


The next table provides a list of key producers of graphene, with special focus on medical applications.

 


 

Related topics: Synthesis of graphene, biosensors for foodborne pathogens, graphene quantum dots for chemo-photothermal cancer therapy, graphene-based flexible and stretchable bioelectronics, graphene scaffolds for the nervous system, graphene-based super-resolution imaging

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