Fullerenes have attracted considerable attention in different fields of science since their discovery in 1985. Investigations of physical, chemical and biological properties of fullerenes have yielded promising information. It is inferred that size, hydrophobicity, three-dimensionality and electronic configurations make them an appealing subject in medicinal chemistry. Their unique carbon cage structure coupled with immense scope for derivatization make them a potential therapeutic agent.
The study of biological applications has attracted increasing attention despite the low solubility of carbon spheres in physiological media.
Fullerene is able to fit inside the hydrophobic cavity of HIV proteases, inhibiting the access of substrates to the catalytic site of enzyme. It can be used as radical scavenger and antioxidant. At the same time, if exposed to light, fullerene can produce singlet oxygen in high quantum yields.