Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Applied nanobiomedicine: Exploiting nanoparticles to hunt for hidden cancer cells

08.06.2012
Launch of the interdisciplinary joint project "MRCyte"

The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research provides over €300,000 for the next three years to fund a new research project at the Mainz University Medical Center. The project aims to detect dispersed tumor cells in cancer patients. Latest reports indicate that such detached cancer cells could play an important role for the early detection of cancer.

Also, they may provide important information whether patients are indeed responding to therapy. To overcome the current limitations precluding the routine detection of these rare cells, the research network seeks to exploit a novel combination of nanotechnology combined with principles underlying hard drive technology. The research team headed by Professor Dr. Roland Stauber of the Department of Otolaryngology, Head, and Neck Surgery at the Mainz University Medical Center is embedded in the recently initiated "Magnetic Flow Cytometry" (MRCyte) project.

Almost all forms of cancer occur much more frequently in older patients than in younger people. Demographic changes and the general increase in life expectancy mean that individuals are at increased risk of developing cancer. According to the Cancer Information Service (KID) of the German Cancer Research Center, it is expected that some 486,000 new cases of cancer will be reported in Germany in 2012. Despite innovative treatments and the fact that more and more people survive their illness, cancer is still one of the most common causes of death in Germany due to its increased prevalence.

In addition to the development of novel cancer treatment strategies, early disease detection and the monitoring of patient response is highly effective in reducing mortality. "Latest findings seem to indicate that dispersed tumor cells are actually an early warning signal not only of cancer development but also of relapse following therapy," explains project manager Professor Roland Stauber. The detection of such tumor cells in the blood of cancer patients is thus of particular interest in terms of both diagnosis and prognosis. However, before this knowledge can be exploited routinely in the clinics, the development of reliable and easy-to-use detection systems is a must. Such devices need to ensure that isolated tumor cells can be reliable and dynamically detected without the need for complex prior sample preparation. Hence, during the new research project, the researchers in Mainz and their collaborative partners from industry and academia are aiming at the development of a method that allows the concentration of rare cells in patients’ blood by a novel combination of nanoparticle-based magnetic flow cytometry combined with hard drive read head detection technology. "Early detection is still the crucial factor in the fight against cancer. The strategy adopted in the MRCyte joint project is tremendously innovative and could well open up new dimensions for future treatment concepts," explains the Scientific Director of the Mainz University Medical Center, Professor Dr. Dr. Reinhard Urban.

Still, one of the main challenges prior to applying the research results from "bench to bedside" is based on the fact that cancer cells can vastly differ in terms of appearance, size, and composition compared to their healthy "sister" cells. This makes it even more difficult to reliably detect detached tumor cells. "Clearly, before our approach can be used on patients, extensive laboratory research is required," emphasizes Stauber.

"Fortunately, our experience and developed technologies obtained during a previous project supported by the Rhineland-Palatinate Trust for Innovation will help us to rationally address these caveats in order to further improve patients’ care procedures," Professor Roland Stauber is confidently looking ahead. The funding will therefore provide a decisive impetus for the implementation of innovative projects with a high practical relevance.

Petra Giegerich | idw
Further information:
http://www.uni-mainz.de/eng/15411.php

More articles from Interdisciplinary Research:

nachricht Lego-like wall produces acoustic holograms
17.10.2016 | Duke University

nachricht New evidence on terrestrial and oceanic responses to climate change over last millennium
11.10.2016 | University of Granada

All articles from Interdisciplinary Research >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Shape matters when light meets atom

Mapping the interaction of a single atom with a single photon may inform design of quantum devices

Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

Im Focus: Molecules change shape when wet

Broadband rotational spectroscopy unravels structural reshaping of isolated molecules in the gas phase to accommodate water

In two recent publications in the Journal of Chemical Physics and in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, researchers around Melanie Schnell from the Max...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

NASA's AIM observes early noctilucent ice clouds over Antarctica

05.12.2016 | Earth Sciences

Shape matters when light meets atom

05.12.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

Researchers uncover protein-based “cancer signature”

05.12.2016 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>