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Carbon nanotube micro-arrays poised to help the capture of circulating tumor cells

Come: Chinese Academy of Sciences    Date: 2016-07-01 09:21:22


  While the application of carbon nanotubes to detect cancer related proteins, bacteria and viruses has been widely reported, nanotube devices that can capture cancer cells from complex fluids have remained elusive。 Now, reporting in Nanotechnology, a team of scientists in the US from Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Thomas Jefferson University and University of Louisville have been successful in making carbon nanotube antibody micro-arrays for rapid and label free capture of breast cancer cells。
 
The arrays consist of 60-240 elements of individual nanotube devices which traps the cells from complex fluids such as buffy coats/blood using specific antibodies. Each device in the array can be individually addressed. The team found unique electrical signature of specific interaction versus non-specific interaction of cells spiked in buffy coats.
 
A statistical classifier based on Dynamic Time Warping enables the electrical signatures from the devices to be classified as specific versus non-specific with 91% sensitivity, 82% specificity and 86% accuracy. Isolated devices based on electrical signatures showed the presence of cancer cells both in optical and confocal image analysis with single cell sensitivity. The array approach can enable ease and rapid isolation and detection of CTCs in blood using the reported approach.

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