Chi­nese re­searchers de­sign Vel­cro sen­sor for can­cer cells

BioSpectrum (Asia) - - Science News -

A group of re­searchers from Chi­nese Academy of Sciences and Pek­ing Univer­sity Third Hos­pi­tal has de­vel­oped a new type of sen­sor that acts like Vel­cro for prostate can­cer cells, stick­ing them to a mod­i­fied frosted glass slide, like those used in sci­ence classes, so that they can be iden­ti­fied from blood sam­ples. Ac­cord­ing to the re­searchers, the low-cost method could help doc­tors bet­ter di­ag­nose and mon­i­tor the dis­ease.

In men with prostate can­cer, some tu­mor cells exit the prostate gland and cir­cu­late in the blood. De­tect­ing th­ese cells could en­able di­ag­no­sis at an ear­lier stage or help doc­tors as­sess whether treat­ment is ef­fec­tive. How­ever, be­cause cir­cu­lat­ing tu­mor cells are present in very small num­bers, find­ing them can be a chal­lenge. When the re­searchers tested blood sam­ples from prostate can­cer pa­tients, the de­vice de­tected as few as 10 tu­mor cells in 1 mil­li­liter of blood.

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