MagicBoris: I like it when the words are big and easy to read and make me feel really smart
jfarkinB: Making castings? Yeah, no. Gallium is soft, and sub-millimeter wires are fragile. How are you going to get the heart out from around the wires after they're cast?It's also sticky, so getting it flushed out of a living animal is going to be tricky at best.Why not PTFE-encased bismuth nanoparticles, or something like that -- not liquid, but fine enough to behave like one?
felching pen: Heart of Gold? Astronomical improbability.
poorjon: jfarkinB: Making castings? Yeah, no. Gallium is soft, and sub-millimeter wires are fragile. How are you going to get the heart out from around the wires after they're cast?It's also sticky, so getting it flushed out of a living animal is going to be tricky at best.Why not PTFE-encased bismuth nanoparticles, or something like that -- not liquid, but fine enough to behave like one?Why bother with the PTFE? Its my understanding that bismuth is pretty much the heaviest element which is biologically innocuous, and with 30 more electrons than iodine it should be great at scattering x-rays. I've always found it really weird that bismuth, surrounded by lead, tin, antimony, tellurium, and polonium (some of the most toxic elements on the board), and at the bottom of the pnictogens column (full of classically toxic nasties that only get worse as you go down) is basically harmless. Funny old world, I guess...On that note, I find it odd that Ga having 20 or so fewer electrons than iodine is shown to be a better contrast agent in this study. I'm assuming that in this case its because iodine-based contrast agents are administered as a dilute solution, whereas these guys sound like they were literally filling the vasculature of the heart with a pure liquid gallium embolism. Even though gallium is pretty innocuous stuff, I can't imagine that displacing all the blood from the heart's vasculature, for however brief a period, could be harmless. I also find their "you just suck the gallium back out!" statement to be highly doubtful.
eyeq360: Have you read "The Disappearing Spoon" by Sam Kean? Pretty good book about the elements on the periodic table. He mentions about bismuth and how weird it is.
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