According to an article on the Daily Galaxy, a joint study by the University of Warwick in Britain and Sun Yat-Sen University of China has found that compounds based on iridium can kill cancer cells by filling them with a deadly version of oxygen when activated by laser light, while not harming healthy tissue.
Researchers have conducted the research on tumors associated with lung cancer by using an organic-iridium compound.
Researchers at Sun Yat-Sen University in Guangzhou say they believe that photochemotherapy - using laser light to target cancer - is emerging as a viable, effective and non-invasive treatment.
As patients are becoming increasingly resistant to traditional therapies, the researchers say it is becoming vital to establish new methods to treat cancer and other diseases.
Iridium was first discovered in 1803. Its melting point is more than 2400° Celsius, and is considered the world's most corrosion-resistant metal.
One hypothesis is that iridium came to earth on the asteroid which caused the mass extinction that erased up to 75 percent of all plant and animal species on earth.