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A fullerene is a molecule of carbon in the form of a hollow sphere, ellipsoid, tube, and many other shapes. Spherical fullerenes are also called buckyballs, and they resemble the balls used in football (soccer). Cylindrical ones are called carbon nanotubes or buckytubes. Fullerenes are similar in structure to graphite, which is composed of stacked graphene sheets of linked hexagonal rings; but they may also contain pentagonal (or sometimes heptagonal) rings. The fullerenes are also found to be soluble in common solvents such as benzene, toluene or chloroform.
Fullerenes have been extensively used for several biomedical applications including the design of high-performance MRI contrast agents, X-Ray imaging contrast agents, photodynamic therapy, and drug and gene delivery.