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05-Mar-2019

Exosomes From Blood Can Be Pulled With The Help Of Microfluidic Device To Test For Cancer

Seemingly all the cells present in our body produce tiny vesicles called exosomes. For many years their identity was established as a way for cells to expunge built- up trash, however over the past decade scientists have discovered that exosomes have an important part in regulating a variety of biochemical processes. A couple of these important discoveries also include that neoplasm produce comparatively more exosomes than healthy cells and secondly exosomes may carry biomarkers that can indicate the presence of tumors in the body.

Many research institutions around the globe are constantly working on finding out a way of filtering out exosomes from blood, however; due to their extremely tiny size it has been a challenge to achieve that. Recently, a microfluidic device that features nano-scale patterning, which is able to pull out exosomes from blood plasma and identify whether they carry a cancer biomarker has been developed by scientists at University of Kansas.

Within the device the nano- pattern is produced through self- assembly chemical process and it resembles a fish bone. This particular pattern manages to push exosomes exclusively right against an electronic chip which senses the presence of the exosomes. Exosome might get encapsulated due to any liquidrsquo;s tendency to do so, preventing it to contact a surface; which in turn is a challenge. But with the leveraging of fish bone structure with the technique of mass transfer, it was made possible by the researchers.


Testing on blood plasma samples of patients suffering from ovarian cancer, as well as healthy controls showed the technology worked.

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Last Updated: 20-Mar-2019