Nanotechnology is a growing field with an incredible potential for several sectors. In healthcare, the development of nano-enhanced pharmaceuticals could prove incredibly powerful for treatment of widespread diseases like cancer. Electronics have also embraced nanotechnologies, for developing more powerful computer processors and increased storage limits.
Together with Brazil, Mexico has been the first Latin American country to develop a strategy in this nascent field. Since the early 2000s, Mexico has recognized the enormous potential of nanotechnologies by enacting the Special Program of Science and Technology (PECYTI) 2001-2006, part of the National Development Plan. The Program focused on the need to develop a national policy for promoting nanotechnology and on the creation of a research network in Mexico.
In 2002, the Mexican Program for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology was drafted by seven prominent public institutions and four foreign expert advisors.
In 2009, the National Nanotechnology and Nanoscience Network was created and funded with $700,000 USD, gathering together more than 100 researchers in the field. Two national nanotechnologies laboratories have been built, one in Chihuahua, at the Advanced Materials Research Center and one in San Luis Potosí, at the Potosí Institute of Scientific and Technological Research.
The effect on the research development has been notable: in the Latin American region, Mexico is second only to Brazil for the number of publications in nanotechnology.
Moreover, several companies have started to operate. It has been estimated that in Mexico more than 150 products have been developed using nanotechnology. Gresmex designed and patented a sanitizer able to destroy H1N1 virus; Sanki developed a food supplement made with nano-biotechnology. The Monterrey-based Sigma Alimientos commercializes a nano-packaging for storing food that otherwise deteriorates quickly in the presence of oxygen, while Nanosoluciones sells nano-enhanced water-repellent...