Nanoferon: Nanotech Inhibitors
Nanoferons are a subset of blue goo nano-defenses. They are made up of extremely complex large molecules of very specific shape, bonding and size. They act in a similar fashion to antibodies in a biological system. There are two general types of nanoferon; chemical and kinetic.

Chemical nanoferons use atoms that form very strong bonds or that cause strong chemical reactions when an attempt is made to disassemble the atom. The effect is to jam, slow or even break the disassembling tool. The chemically active materials often do not come into play until enough of the molecule is broken down and the reactive component of the nanoferon can access the disassembler. This type often uses rare or dangerous elements like halogens.

Kinetic nanoferons use stored kinetic energy to either break the attacking nanite or snap closed like a trap, thereby rendering the nanite inert. This springy structure combines the flexibility of proteins and polymers with the strength of nanotechnology's precise construction. The snare sometimes prevents a disassembler's proper function by playing a very precise game of "keep-away" to prevent other molecules from coming into contact with the nanite's manipulators.

Some nanoferon molecules are designed to fit only certain types of nanites with specific designs just as antibodies are shaped to bond only with invading organisms of specific shapes. Others are more universal and can affect attacking disassemblers of various types. Some sophonts use nanoferon as a sort of "vaccine" against other nanoweapons in hope that it will buy them enough time to give themselves a shot or spray on a defense before they are severely hurt. The effectiveness of such vaccines varies dramatically; the most effective are able to form deposits on exposed surfaces as well as penetrating into the interior of the protected subject.
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Development Notes
Text by Michael Boncher
Initially published on 05 December 2004.