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High-sensitivity bone marrow aspiration technology enhances leukemia cell detection
Date:10/6/2009

PHILADELPHIA Scientists have created a viable technology to improve the detection of leukemia cells in bone marrow.

Superconducting Quantum Interference Device (SQUID) enhanced the ability to rapidly quantify the amount of nanoparticle bound tumor cells in a sample at least 10 fold, and increased sensitivity of minimal residual disease measurements. Results of this proof-of-concept study are published in Cancer Research, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research.

"This promises to significantly enhance the detection for residual disease in leukemia and other cancers," said lead scientist Richard S. Larson, M.D., Ph.D., vice president for translation research at the University of New Mexico Health Science Center. "Coupling nanotechnology can be employed in common techniques to enhance its utility."

These findings are a result of a collaborative research effort between Senior Scientific, LLC, and the University of New Mexico. The study was funded by a small business innovation grant awarded by the National Cancer Institute.

Previous studies have indicated that the magnetic needle can collect approximately 80 percent of leukemia cells in a bone marrow sample in a matter of minutes, according to Edward R. Flynn, Ph.D., president and CEO of Senior Scientific, LLC.

The scientists developed this magnetic marrow biopsy needle in an effort to target tumor cells with nanoparticles and then preferentially extract the tumor cells with a magnetic needle. They used anti-CD34 antibody loaded magnetic nanoparticles to detect CD34+ cells as an indicator of leukemia. To quantify the cells recovered, they coupled this nanoparticle-mediated fishing for leukemic cells with SQUID.

SQUID enhanced the sensitivity of measuring minimal residual disease over standard pathology methods for patients undergoing chemotherapy.

"This result will determine more precisely the effect of the chemotherapy a
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Contact: Tara Yates
tara.yates@aacr.org
267-646-0558
American Association for Cancer Research
Source:Eurekalert  

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