Navigation Links
'Lab on a Chip' Might Speed Breast Cancer Monitoring
Date:10/7/2009

Device makes measuring estrogen faster and simpler, researchers say,,,,

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 7 (HealthDay News) -- A pocket-size device under development could soon help monitor how well breast cancer treatments are working and help assess breast cancer risk by measuring levels of the hormone estrogen.

''We've developed a 'lab on a chip,' which is useful for making quantitative measurements of estrogen in samples of blood or tissue," said Aaron Wheeler, the Canada research chair of bioanalytical chemistry at the University of Toronto and a co-author of a report on the device in the Oct. 7 issue of Science Translational Medicine.

The new device relies on a method called digital microfluidics. The technique is being used to analyze hormones found in tiny samples of blood, serum and breast cancer tissue.

Instead of moving electrons across tiny wires, it electronically manipulates minute droplets of fluid on the surface of a microchip, integrating many different lab functions so fewer are needed, Wheeler explained during a teleconference briefing Oct. 6. Hormones are extracted, purified and analyzed. And it's all done on a device that can fit on the palm of the hand, he said.

The "lab on a chip" technique, already under study in other areas, takes raw, unprocessed tissue and delivers results rapidly, Wheeler said. Estrogen can be measured in minutes.

It also requires much tinier samples than those needed by conventional methods, said Dr. Noha Mousa, also a co-author of the report, who is working on her Ph.D. in medicine at the University of Toronto. "This is 1,000 times smaller than the tissue samples required" by other methods, she said.

For their report, the technique was tested on breast tissue from two postmenopausal breast cancer patients.

Estrogen concentrations are not routinely measured because doing so with conventional methods requires large samples, the researchers noted in their report. But they said that a simpler measuring technique would, for instance, allow doctors to monitor treatment with aromatase inhibitors routinely given to breast cancer patients to block estrogen.

The new method should make that much easier, the researchers said, and it might be practical for other conditions that require hormone level monitoring, such as infertility.

However, Wheeler said that the device and approach are still in the early stages of development. "We anticipate within the next five years a product based on this technique would be available," he said.

An American Cancer Society epidemiologist who was familiar with the report agreed that much more work is needed before the device will be ready for "prime time."

Dr. Susan Gapstur, vice president of epidemiology for the society, said that the validity of the measurements needs to be assessed but, if the findings hold up, such a device could be very useful.

"It is well known that estrogen is associated with breast cancer risk," Gapstur said. Typically, estrogen levels in the blood are measured, but those levels usually are lower than levels in breast tissue, she said. Breast estrogen levels can be measured by obtaining nipple aspirate fluid, but the fluid is difficult to obtain, especially from older women, she explained.

"Therefore, a device which can measure breast tissue estrogen, which obtains the samples in a painless and quick manner, would be very useful for studies of breast cancer risk and prevention," she said.

More information

BreastCancer.org has more about breast cancer screening.



SOURCES: Aaron Wheeler, Ph.D., Canada research chairman, bioanalytical chemistry, University of Toronto; Noha Mousa, M.D., Institute of Medicine, University of Toronto; Susan M. Gapstur, Ph.D., M.P.H., vice president, epidemiology, American Cancer Society, Atlanta; Oct. 7, 2009, Science Translational Medicine


'/>"/>
Copyright©2009 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Blood diagnosis -- chip-based and mobile
2. U of T researchers create microchip that can detect type and severity of cancer
3. Vector Software Announces Support for TASKING C166 Compiler on Infineon Chips
4. New microchip technology performs 1,000 chemical reactions at once
5. MHPA, Leading Association Representing Medicaid Health Plans, Issues Statement on Proposed California SCHIP Elimination
6. THA, Broad Coalition Press Leaders in House and Senate to Act Swiftly and Forcefully to Pass CHIP Bill
7. InDevRs FluChip detects and distinguishes swine-origin H1N1 from human influenza viruses
8. WaferGen and Leading Academic Medical Center Establish Genotyping Research Collaboration to Validate SNPs in Breast Cancer Using SmartChip(TM) Real-Time PCR System
9. Aethlon Medical Announces Engagement of RedChip Companies to Initiate Investor and Media Relations Programs
10. Vision Chips, Inc. Deploys iNTERFACEWARE's Chameleon HL7 Messaging Tool with OBSERVER7
11. The Quantum Group Announces Engagement of RedChip Companies for Investor Relations Programs
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... ... Topical BioMedics, Inc, makers of Topricin and MyPainAway Pain Relief Products, join The ‘Business for ... $12 an hour by 2020 and then adjusting it yearly to increase at the same ... wage, assure the wage floor does not erode again, and make future increases more predictable. ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... EB Medicine presented its first-ever ... Medicine conference in Ponte Vedra Beach, FL. The awards honor the outstanding work ... Practice and Pediatric Emergency Medicine Practice. , “With this award, we recognize ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... client, The Grove Investment Group (TGIG), has initiated cultivation and processing operations at ... Las Vegas and Pahrump, Nevada. , Puradigm is the manufacturer of a complete ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... National recruitment firm ... sciences executive with extensive sequencing and genomics experience, as Vice President of North American ... Hill will be responsible for leading the sales team in the commercialization of the ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Today, MTI-GlobalStem, ... (iPS) cells and other difficult to transfect cells, announces its launch of the ... G9™ Gene Editing System is a complete system for culturing and transfecting ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... -- Research and Markets has announced the addition ... report to their offering. ... The World Market for Companion Diagnostics covers the world ... in the report includes the following: , ... by Region (N. America, EU, ROW), 2015-2020 , World ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016  MedSource announced today ... its e-clinical software solution of choice.  This latest ... possible value to their clients by offering a ... preferred relationship establishes nowEDC as the EDC platform ... MedSource,s full-service clients.  "nowEDC has long been a ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016 Roche (SIX: RO, ... clearance for its Elecsys BRAHMS PCT (procalcitonin) assay as ... or septic shock. With this clearance, Roche is the ... fully integrated solution for sepsis risk assessment and management. ... bacterial infection and PCT levels in blood can aid ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: