Social Media Sidebar

Announcement

Please sign up, comment on articles and bring your friends!

Current poll

PlanetTech is asking:

What do you think about our new web site?

Love it, indeed
Really good solution
Same as old one
The old one was better
This is a new option

Quote of the day

When seen through the lens of technology, few resources are truly scarce; they’re mainly inaccessible. 

 

Peter Diamandis

'Pen' identifies cancer in 10 seconds

RATE THIS! +45
Posted in Hardware on 7th Sep, 2017 05:52 PM by Alex Muller

A handheld device can identify cancerous tissue in 10 seconds. They say it could make surgery to remove a tumour quicker, safer and more precise. And they hope it would avoid the "heartbreak" of leaving any of the cancer behind. Tests, published in Science Translational Medicine, suggest the technology is accurate 96% of the time.

 

The MasSpec Pen takes advantage of the unique metabolism of cancer cells. Their furious drive to grow and spread means their internal chemistry is very different to that of healthy tissue.
 
The pen is touched on to a suspected cancer and releases a tiny droplet of water.
 
Chemicals inside the living cells move into the droplet, which is then sucked back up the pen for analysis.
 
The pen is plugged into a mass spectrometer - a piece of kit that can measure the mass of thousands of chemicals every second.
 
It produces a chemical fingerprint that tells doctors whether they are looking at healthy tissue or cancer.
 
The challenge for surgeons is finding the border between the cancer and normal tissue.
 
In some tumours it is obvious, but in others the boundary between healthy and diseased tissue can be blurred. The pen should help doctors ensure none of the cancer is left behind.
 
Remove too little tissue, and any remaining cancerous cells will grow into another tumour. But take too much, and you can cause damage, particularly in organs such as the brain.
 
Livia Eberlin, an assistant professor of chemistry at the University of Texas, Austin, told the BBC: "What's exciting about this technology is how clearly it meets a clinical need.
 
"The tool is elegant and simple and can be in the hands of surgeons in a short time."
 
The technology has been tested on 253 samples as part of the study. The plan is to continue testing to refine the device before trialling it during operations next year.
 
The pen currently analyses a patch of tissue 1.5mm (0.06in) across, but the researchers have already developed pens that are even more refined and should be able to look at a finer patch of tissue just 0.6mm across.
 
While the pen itself is cheap, the mass spectrometer is expensive and bulky. Dr Eberlin said: "The roadblock is the mass spectrometer, for sure.
 
"We're visioning a mass spectrometer that's a little smaller, cheaper and tailored for this application that can be wheeled in and out of rooms."
 
Dr James Suliburk, one of the researchers and the head of endocrine surgery at Baylor College of Medicine, said: "Any time we can offer the patient a more precise surgery, a quicker surgery or a safer surgery, that's something we want to do.
 
The MasSpec Pen is the latest attempt to improve the accuracy of surgery. A team at Imperial College London have developed a knife that "smells" the tissue it cuts to determine whether it is removing cancer.
 
And a team at Harvard are using lasers to analyse how much of a brain cancer to remove.
 
Dr Aine McCarthy, from Cancer Research UK, said: "Exciting research like this has the potential to speed up how quickly doctors can determine if a tumour is cancerous or not and learn about its characteristics.
 
"Gathering this kind of information quickly during surgery could help doctors match the best treatment options for patients sooner."

Tags: healthmedicinecancerresearch

Read original article » Back to category

Comments



 

Recent headlines

  • Posted in Software on 2017-11-20 17:24:02
    The 3 biggest threats to your Bitcoin (and 10 tips to.....read more
    Posted in Medicine on 2017-11-20 17:20:08
    How to open the blood-brain-barrier with precision for.....read more
    Posted in Hardware on 2017-11-20 17:05:43
    China on Pace for Record Solar-Power Installations..read more
    Posted in Science on 2017-11-20 00:42:21
    Small steps forward as UN climate talks end in Bonn..read more
    Posted in Hardware on 2017-11-20 00:37:56
    US gov should support SpaceX and develop moon bases..read more
Posted in Business on 2013-10-10 01:33
China is working towards a manned lunar mission in about.....read more
Posted in Business on 2013-10-20 07:17
Spacex says China is their main competitor for commercial.....read more
Posted in Software on 2013-10-20 06:43
Pirate Bay Browser Clocks 1,000,000 Downloads..read more
Posted in Medicine on 2013-10-10 02:10
Google reportedly investing hundreds of millions into new.....read more
Posted in Medicine on 2013-10-14 03:13
Endothelial Cells Can Repair and Regenerate Organs,.....read more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Spacex says China is their main competitor for commercial.....read more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Staring at Your Phone Could Be Making You Short Sighted..read more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Oculus Rift virtual reality headset coming to mobile, but.....read more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
China is working towards a manned lunar mission in about.....read more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Delivering drugs via nanoparticles to target mitochondria..read more

Recent Blog Posts

  • Posted by AlexMuller
    Martian landscapes formed from sand 'levitating' on a little.....read more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Scientists detect comets outside our solar system..read more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Advanced artificial limbs mapped in the brain..read more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Bacteria have a sense of touch..read more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Recurrent brain cancer: New hope with phase 1 clinical trial.....read more

Login to your Account

Login to your PlanetTech Account here

Username:
Password:
Remember me
or

Create a New Account

You just need username and password

The following errors occured:
Username:
Email:
Password:
Verify password:
Remember me