Wired looks at how early stage nanotechnology - largely clever applications of improved materials science - will be employed in the fight against cancer, one of the many age-related conditions we must prevent or cure on the way to longer, healthier lives. "Nanotech gives us the opportunity to detect cancer tumors at 1,000 cells, whereas we're now seeing them at 1 million cells. By the time you detect some cancers today, there's no option of curing them, only of prolonging life. ... Researchers also hope to make particles that combine all these functions. 'We call this the mother ship. You can put multifunctional particles on it, like an aircraft carrier transports choppers and planes. It goes into the body, and if it encounters a suspicious region, finds out what that area is about and delivers the therapeutics.'"