Diamonds aren’t just for jewelry anymore. The precious stones are effective at detecting early-stage cancerous tumors.
Diamonds may soon be everyone’s best friend.
A new study out of Australia found synthetic versions of the bright gems to be effective at detecting early-stage cancerous tumors through magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). With the American Cancer Society’s estimating that 1.6 million Americans will be diagnosed with cancer and over 500,000 will die in 2015, the study could prove lifesaving for years to come.
Published in Nature Communications Friday, the study explores diamonds’ ability to light up cancer cells that are generally undetectable. The experiments were performed by a group of physicists from the University of Sydney who focused their study on nano-diamonds, 4-5 nanometer diamonds found inside meteorites.
The tiny gems have been explored in the cancer world before. In 2011, a study in Science Translational Medicine found that attaching them to chemotherapy drugs increased the effectiveness of the drug—effectively, shrinking tumors in mice. The Northwestern University engineers behind the study said there are two key characteristics that make nano-diamonds so useful: size and non-toxicity. This means that both the immune system and kidneys will not try to attack them.
It was this previous research that inspired the University of Sydney physics professor David Reilly to expand the research into the gems benefits.
"We knew nano-diamonds were of interest for delivering drugs during chemotherapy because they are largely non-toxic and non-reactive," said Reilly. "We thought we could build on these non-toxic properties realizing that diamonds have magnetic characteristics enabling them to act as beacons in MRIs. We effectively turned a pharmaceutical problem into a physics problem."
In order to study the nano-diamond’s ability to detect cancerous tumors, the researchers had to “hyperpolarize” them, which they describe as a “process of aligning atoms inside a diamond so they create a signal detectable by an MRI scanner.” The hyperpolarized nano-diamonds were attached to specific cancer-fighting molecules, so that they could be tracked throughout the body.
Watching these nano-diamonds provided a roadmap of cancer cells in the body—wherever they traveled, the cancer-fighting molecules were traveling too. "This is a great example of how quantum physics research tackles real-world problems,” says Reilly. “In this case opening the way for us to image and target cancers long before they become life-threatening.”
While diamonds’ role in both detecting and treating cancer sounds promising, it’s not the only shiny object to be explored by science. A growing body of evidence is now suggesting that gold may have its own unique powers when it comes to fighting cancer.
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Step into the mesmerizing world of natural Pink diamonds, synonymous of elegance and sophistication. These exquisite gems have stolen the spotlight in the realm of fine jewelry, captivating the hearts of fashion enthusiasts around the globe.
In this article, we’ll explore the enchanting features of Fancy Pink diamonds, uncovering their origins, possible tones, and the growing fascination around them. As we delve into their unique characteristics, you’ll learn how they compare to other popular pink gemstones, revealing the distinct advantages that set them apart.
The Origin Of Their Mesmerising Hues
Fancy Pink diamonds are the result of a remarkable geological process that lasted millions of years. During their formation process, atomic traces of minerals such as hydrogen, nitrogen, or boron were introduced into their crystalline structure, resulting in impressive hues.
However, another scientific theory states that the pink hue comes from a deformation in the crystal lattice of the stone, a phenomenon caused by extreme pressure.
Whichever the cause, thanks to our Earth’s natural transformations, today we get to enjoy the exceptional shades of Pink diamonds.
From delicate pastel tones reminiscent of blooming cherry blossoms to intense, vivid shades that command attention, natural Pink diamonds offer a diverse palette of hues that ignite the imagination.
Rarity And A Growing Fascination
The allure of these unique stones lies not only in their enchanting beauty but also in their rarity.
As luxury enthusiasts and jewelry connoisseurs seek to come in possession of the most exclusive and coveted pieces, the interest surrounding fancy pink diamonds continues to grow. With the recent closure of the renowned Argyle mine in Australia, a significant source of Pink diamonds, their scarcity has skyrocketed.
Pink Diamond’s Unparalleled Properties
The refractive index of a diamond is approximately 2.42. This high refractive index is one of the factors that contribute to the exceptional brilliance and sparkle that diamonds are renowned for. The high refractive index allows diamonds to bend and reflect light in a way that creates maximum dispersion and brilliance, resulting in their captivating play of light and fire. It is this unique optical property that sets diamonds apart from other gemstones and contributes to their timeless allure and desirability.
Diamonds are renowned for their exceptional hardness, ranking 10 on the Mohs scale, which is the highest possible rating. This remarkable property makes diamonds highly resistant to scratching and abrasion, ensuring their longevity and durability even with daily wear.
The hardness of a diamond contributes significantly to its value. Diamonds are prized for their ability to withstand the rigors of everyday use without losing their beauty or succumbing to damage. This durability ensures that diamond jewelry, such as engagement rings and heavily worn pieces, can be cherished forever and passed down through generations.
What About Other Pink Gemstones?
This pink gemstone is often used in jewelry for its vibrant color. Pink tourmaline can be found in various parts of the world, including Brazil, Afghanistan, Mozambique, and the United States. Each location may produce unique variations in color and quality, making it more complicated for the regular customer to understand how to measure and compare characteristics.
Tourmaline ranks 7 to 7.5 on the Mohs' scale of hardness, making it moderately durable, but relatively softer compared to Pink diamonds. With a refractive index between 1.624 and 1.644, pink tourmaline exhibits a good amount of brilliance and light dispersion.
This mineral showcases a soft, delicate pink hue that does not typically offer much sparkle. There are multiple levels of transparency available, from very translucent to milky opaque or smoky with yellow or brown undertones.
Scoring a 7 on the Mohs scale, pink quartz is relatively durable and suitable for some types of jewelry. However, it is still important to protect it from impact, and best suitable for earrings and low-wear pieces.
The intensity of its color depends on the place of origin and the combination of trace elements present within its crystal structure.
With a hardness of 9 on the Mohs scale, pink sapphires are very durable and resistant, making them suitable for all kinds of jewelry pieces. However, they are more prone to scratches than diamonds.
Kunzite is quite affordable because it’s relatively unknown although it can be found in many places like Afghanistan, Brazil, Madagascar, and the USA.
Like most color stones, kunzite can be undergo irradiation or heat treatments to enhance its color. Exposure to heat and bright light can cause color in both natural and treated kunzite to fade over time.
Most morganite deposits are found in Brazil, but the highest quality specimens come from Madagascar. Typically, morganite enjoys a high transparency with minimal inclusions resulting in clear, polished stones.
Scoring a 7.5 to 8 on the Mohs scale, Morganite is safe and durable enough for jewelry.
Your Best Choice: Pink Diamonds
There are multiple options to choose from to create a jewel with pink gemstones. However, they all fall short when compared to the durability and brilliance of natural Pink diamonds. With sources becoming more scarce while demand continues grows, Pink diamonds keep appreciating in value making them a better financial choice when compared to other gemstones which tend to loose value in the resale marker. Pink diamonds present multiple advantages for their investment potential and as a valuable asset to be passed on for generations.
When purchasing color gemstones, it’s important the buyer requests a professional laboratory report that discloses any enhancements to make an informed decision. Unfortunately for most consumers, it’s hard to find full-detailed information on a finished jewelry piece and it requires additional effort and inquiries to confirm the quality of a gemstone.
Langerman Diamonds has over 50 years of expertise in sourcing and trading natural color diamonds. Explore our online inventory and contact us to learn more about the purchasing process.