Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Second-generation device more effective in capturing circulating tumor cells

13.10.2010
Redesigned microchip-based device provides more data, finds previously unseen CTC clusters

A redesigned version of the CTC-Chip – a microchip-based device for capturing rare circulating tumor cells (CTCs) – appears to be more effective and should be easier to manufacture than the original. Called the HB-(herringbone) Chip, the new device also may provide more comprehensive and easily accessible data from captured tumor cells.

Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) researchers – including members of the team that developed the CTC-Chip – report the second-generation device in a Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences paper that has been released online.

"The originally CTC-Chip worked wonderfully in a small-scale laboratory setting, but limitations arose when we attempted to increase production for larger clinical studies. The new device performs as well or better than the previous technology with several additional benefits," says Shannon Stott, PhD, of the MGH Center for Engineering in Medicine, co-lead author of the PNAS paper. "It also was able to capture something that had never been seen using either the CTC-chip or the most prevalent previous technology – small clusters of CTCs, the significance of which we need to study."

CTCs are living solid tumor cells found at extremely low levels in the bloodstream. Until the 2007 development of the CTC-chip by researchers from the MGH Cancer Center and the Center for Engineering in Medicine, it was not possible to get information from CTCs that would be useful for clinical decision making.

In the original device, patient blood samples are passed over a silicon chip covered with microscopic posts coated with an antibody that binds to most tumor cells. Not only did this design proved challenging to manufacture reliably and cost-effectively, but the smooth flow of blood around the microposts also limited the number of CTCs that came into contact with the antibody-covered surfaces. In their search to increase the capture of CTCs, the researchers found that passing samples through a chamber lined with a herringbone pattern of grooves – an approach developed elsewhere for quickly mixing independent streams of fluid – would generate a more chaotic flow that could significantly increase the number of captured cells.

The HB-Chip also can process larger-volume blood samples, increasing the ability to find rare CTCs. The microchip is mounted on a standard glass slide, which allows the use of standard pathology tests to identify cancer cells; and the device can be easily opened, giving access to CTCs for additional testing and growth in culture. Experiments comparing the HB-Chip to the CTC-chip found the new device captured more than 90 percent of cancer cells introduced into blood samples – a 25 percent improvement over the CTC-chip. Tests of samples from cancer patients found the redesigned device at least as effective as the original.

The HB-Chip also captured clusters of 4 to 12 CTCs from several patient samples but not from samples to which cancer cells had been added. No previous technology for capturing CTCs has ever found such clumps of tumor cells. "These clusters may have broken off from the original tumor, or they might represent proliferation of CTCs within the circulation," says Mehmet Toner, PhD, director of the BioMicroElectroMechanical Systems Resource Center in the MGH Center for Engineering in Medicine, the paper's senior author. "Further study of these clusters could provide valuable insight in the metastatic process."

Daniel Haber MD PhD, director of the MGH Cancer Center and a co-author of the study, says, "This new technology is a powerful platform that will enable increasingly sophisticated analyses of metastasis and support clinical research in targeted cancer therapies."

While the MGH has filed a patent for the HB-Chip, the research team will continue to develop the technology before potential licensing is explored. The study was supported by grants from Stand Up to Cancer, the Prostate Cancer Foundation, the National Institute for Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering, the National Cancer Institute and the American Cancer Society, along with several additional funders.

Toner is the Benedict Professor of Surgery and Stott is a research fellow in Surgery at Harvard Medical School. Chia-Hsien Hsu, PhD, formerly of the MGH Center for Engineering in Medicine and now with the National Health Research Institutes of Taiwan, was co-lead author of the PNAS paper. Additional co-authors are Dina Tsukrov, Ajay Shah, George Korir, Frederick Floyd Jr., Daniel Irimia and Sunitha Nagrath, MGH Center for Engineering in Medicine; and Min Yu, David Miyamoto, Belinda Waltman, Michael Rothenberg, Malgorzata Smas, Anna Gilman, Jenna Lord, Daniel Winokur, Simeon Springer, Lecia Sequist, Richard Lee, Kurt Isselbacher and Shyamala Maheswaran, MGH Cancer Center.

Massachusetts General Hospital, established in 1811, is the original and largest teaching hospital of Harvard Medical School. The MGH conducts the largest hospital-based research program in the United States, with an annual research budget of more than $600 million and major research centers in AIDS, cardiovascular research, cancer, computational and integrative biology, cutaneous biology, human genetics, medical imaging, neurodegenerative disorders, regenerative medicine, systems biology, transplantation biology and photomedicine.

Katie Marquedant | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.mgh.harvard.edu/

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht World’s Largest Study on Allergic Rhinitis Reveals new Risk Genes
17.07.2018 | Helmholtz Zentrum München - Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Gesundheit und Umwelt

nachricht Plant mothers talk to their embryos via the hormone auxin
17.07.2018 | Institute of Science and Technology Austria

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: First evidence on the source of extragalactic particles

For the first time ever, scientists have determined the cosmic origin of highest-energy neutrinos. A research group led by IceCube scientist Elisa Resconi, spokesperson of the Collaborative Research Center SFB1258 at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), provides an important piece of evidence that the particles detected by the IceCube neutrino telescope at the South Pole originate from a galaxy four billion light-years away from Earth.

To rule out other origins with certainty, the team led by neutrino physicist Elisa Resconi from the Technical University of Munich and multi-wavelength...

Im Focus: Magnetic vortices: Two independent magnetic skyrmion phases discovered in a single material

For the first time a team of researchers have discovered two different phases of magnetic skyrmions in a single material. Physicists of the Technical Universities of Munich and Dresden and the University of Cologne can now better study and understand the properties of these magnetic structures, which are important for both basic research and applications.

Whirlpools are an everyday experience in a bath tub: When the water is drained a circular vortex is formed. Typically, such whirls are rather stable. Similar...

Im Focus: Breaking the bond: To take part or not?

Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.

A frequently used reaction in organic chemistry is nucleophilic substitution. It plays, for example, an important role in in the synthesis of new chemical...

Im Focus: New 2D Spectroscopy Methods

Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.

"Put an excitation into the system and observe how it evolves." According to physicist Professor Tobias Brixner, this is the credo of optical spectroscopy....

Im Focus: Chemical reactions in the light of ultrashort X-ray pulses from free-electron lasers

Ultra-short, high-intensity X-ray flashes open the door to the foundations of chemical reactions. Free-electron lasers generate these kinds of pulses, but there is a catch: the pulses vary in duration and energy. An international research team has now presented a solution: Using a ring of 16 detectors and a circularly polarized laser beam, they can determine both factors with attosecond accuracy.

Free-electron lasers (FELs) generate extremely short and intense X-ray flashes. Researchers can use these flashes to resolve structures with diameters on the...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Leading experts in Diabetes, Metabolism and Biomedical Engineering discuss Precision Medicine

13.07.2018 | Event News

Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP: Fine Tuning for Surfaces

12.07.2018 | Event News

11th European Wood-based Panel Symposium 2018: Meeting point for the wood-based materials industry

03.07.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Microscopic trampoline may help create networks of quantum computers

17.07.2018 | Information Technology

In borophene, boundaries are no barrier

17.07.2018 | Materials Sciences

The role of Sodium for the Enhancement of Solar Cells

17.07.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>