Created new method of efficient capture and analysis of cancer cells

The international research group under the guidance of experts of the Institute of nanoscience of the University of California have developed a new method for efficient capture and analysis of cancer cells in the patient's blood.

Separated from the tumor cancer cells travel through the bloodstream in search of suitable places for the development of new malignant tumors, known as metastases. Catching these disease-causing particles, helping doctors to detect cancer and to choose individual treatment for each patient.

In the laboratory of the California nanosystems Institute of UCLA created a device that captures circulating tumor cells from blood samples. In appearance and principle of operation, it resembles a machine for making coffee.

The NanoVelcro chip the size of a postage stamp has many nanowires thousands of times thinner than a human hair. These nanowires coated with antibodies that recognize circulating in the bloodstream particles. To capture enough cancer cells two milliliters of blood. When the liquid passes through the chip of pathogenic cells cling to the nanowires like "Velcro".

However, the capture of tumor cells is only part of the story. For analysis of cells need to separate them from the chip, and this must be done without damage.

Thrilling method of laser micro-dissection, which the researchers used in their first experiments, required not only a lot of time and effort, but also the use of specialized equipment.

To simplify the process of isolation of cells managed by creating a thermal treatment system, which allows you to adjust the temperature of the blood sample. Polymer brushes nanowires respond to temperature change by changing its physical properties, allowing them to capture or let go of his "prey".

The study was published in the journal ACS Nano.



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