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"Poised between intransigent scepticism and uncritical credulity, it [science fiction] is par excellence the literature of the open mind."
- John Brunner

Healing Crystal  
  A small object that burns off diseased tissue, leaving healthy tissue unharmed.  

"Then I saw something else. There was something beyond the wheel, something shining on a sort of low pedestal. I walked over; there was a little crystal, about the size of an egg, fluorescing to beat Tophet. The light from it stung my hands and face, almost like a static discharge, and then I noticed another funny thing. Remember that wart I had on my left thumb? Look!" Jarvis extended his hand. "It dried up and fell off—just like that! And my abused nose—say, the pain went out of it like magic! The thing had the property of hard ex-rays or gamma radiations, only more so; it destroyed diseased tissue and left healthy tissue unharmed!

"I was thinking what a present that'd be to take back to Mother Earth when a lot of racket interrupted.

Technovelgy from A Martian Odyssey, by Stanley G. Weinbaum.
Published by Wonder Stories in 1934
Additional resources -

Thanks to @SFFAudio for suggesting this story.

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from A Martian Odyssey
  More Ideas and Technology by Stanley G. Weinbaum
  Tech news articles related to A Martian Odyssey
  Tech news articles related to works by Stanley G. Weinbaum

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