Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors



Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


android tablet pc

Home > Press > Plan for cancer detector wins prize for Vanderbilt researchers

Prof. Todd Giorgio is flanked by graduate students Chinmay Soman (left) and
Ashwath Jayagopal, who recently placed third in the NanoNexus Idea to Product competition.
Prof. Todd Giorgio is flanked by graduate students Chinmay Soman (left) and Ashwath Jayagopal, who recently placed third in the NanoNexus Idea to Product competition.

Abstract:
A plan to use nanotechnology to produce a new type of cancer detector won the third-place award at the NanoNexus2007 conference held last month at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

Plan for cancer detector wins prize for Vanderbilt researchers

Nashville, TN | Posted on May 9th, 2007

The detector has been under development for two years by Vanderbilt graduate student Chinmay Soman working under the supervision of Todd Giorgio, professor of biomedical engineering. They have demonstrated that the simple and inexpensive system, which can be built from off-the-shelf components, can rapidly detect the presence of cancer biomarkers - telltale proteins in body fluids that can signal the presence of malignant tumors - at very low levels.

The NanoNexus Idea to Product competition, which took place on April 3-4, was based not only on the technical merit of the proposed device but also on the plan that the researchers advanced for turning it into a commercial product. The judges were drawn from nanotechnology companies, venture capital firms and government research laboratories. Soman and fellow biomedical engineering graduate student Ashwath Jayagopal presented the cancer-detection technology and an associated business plan that won the third-place award of $2,500.

The Quantum Dot Enabled Multiplexed Antigen Profiling (QuaD-MAP) system is based on the ability of nanoparticles to self-assemble - form structures without external prodding. The system starts with nanoscale fluorescent beads called quantum dots. These come in a range of different colors and are used to tag specific biological structures.

Another key component is antibodies, proteins produced by the body's immune system that recognize and bind to foreign substances. The researchers chemically attach antibodies onto the surface of the quantum dots that bind to a particular biomarker. When they mix them in liquid containing the biomarkers, the proteins act as bridges between the quantum dots, forming microscale ‘snowballs' from the nanoscale ‘snowflakes.' Within a matter of minutes, the fluorescent snowballs grow large enough that they can be easily detected by a flow cytometer, a standard hospital instrument used for counting and measuring blood cells. If the targeted biomarkers are not present, the quantum dots do not agglomerate and remain undetectable by the cytometer.

Vanderbilt has applied for a patent on the use of controlled nanoparticle agglomeration combined with characterization by flow cytometry as a novel method of protein detection.

"Biomarker research has been going on for some time and is just reaching the point where we are reasonably confident that biomarkers can be used for cancer detection," Giorgio said. "However, current methods for detecting biomarkers are complicated and expensive, particularly since it appears that it will take the simultaneous identification of several biomarkers to determine the presence of many cancers unambiguously."

That is one of the strengths of the QuaD-MAP approach: It can detect the presence of a number of different biomarkers simultaneously by attaching the antibodies to each biomarker to different-colored quantum dots.

"With this technology, a future scenario might be that you go to the doctor every year for an annual checkup; he draws about 10 cc's of your blood and runs it through our machine," said Soman. "The machine is equipped to detect the biomarkers for all the common types of cancer. Half an hour later it produces a list of the biomarkers that it has found. And then either a software program or the physician examines this list to determine whether you have any cancers that need treating."

Although they don't have any hard-and-fast figures, the researchers say that such a test could be very inexpensive. Quantum dots are expensive on a per gram basis, but only a minute quantity is used in each test.

"For our commercial plan, we proposed a variation on the Gillette razor model: Selling razors cheaply and profiting on the sale of the blades," Soman said. "There was a lot of interest in our approach because it gets around one of the major problems in the biomarker field - the need to license biomarkers that have been patented by hundreds of different people."

The researchers are focusing on lung cancer as an initial application because there is currently no adequate way to detect it at an early stage. According to the American Cancer Society's Cancer Facts and Figures 2007, only 16 percent of lung cancers are detected early, when they can be treated with a 50 percent survival rate. For the other 84 percent, the survival rate drops to 2 percent.

Currently, the researchers are looking for a small business that is interested in partnering with them to apply for a federal small business innovative research grant. "Since the technology is beyond the exploratory stage now, we think the SBIR is the way to go," Giorgio said.

####

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
David F. Salisbury, (615) 343-6803

Copyright © Vanderbilt University

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

Nanomedicine

Creation of 'Rocker' protein opens way for new smart molecules in medicine, other fields December 18th, 2014

Iranian Researchers Produce Electrical Pieces Usable in Human Body December 18th, 2014

Zenosense, Inc. - Hospital Collaboration - 400 Person Lung Cancer Detection Trial December 17th, 2014

Unraveling the light of fireflies December 17th, 2014

Discoveries

Oregon researchers glimpse pathway of sunlight to electricity: Collaboration with Lund University uses modified UO spectroscopy equipment to study 'maze' of connections in photoactive quantum dots December 19th, 2014

Instant-start computers possible with new breakthrough December 19th, 2014

Creation of 'Rocker' protein opens way for new smart molecules in medicine, other fields December 18th, 2014

Iranian Scientists Use Nanotechnology to Increase Power, Energy of Supercapacitors December 18th, 2014

Announcements

Oregon researchers glimpse pathway of sunlight to electricity: Collaboration with Lund University uses modified UO spectroscopy equipment to study 'maze' of connections in photoactive quantum dots December 19th, 2014

Instant-start computers possible with new breakthrough December 19th, 2014

Aculon Hires New Business Development Director December 19th, 2014

Iranian Scientists Use Nanotechnology to Increase Power, Energy of Supercapacitors December 18th, 2014

Human Interest/Art

Longhorn beetle inspires ink to fight counterfeiting November 5th, 2014

Iran-Made Respiratory Nano Masks Provided to Hajj Pilgrims October 23rd, 2014

Japanese gold leaf artists worked on a nano-scale: Study demonstrates X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy is a non-destructive way to date artwork July 3rd, 2014

Harry Potter-style invisibility cloaks: A real possibility next Christmas? Forget socks and shaving foam, the big kids of tomorrow want an invisible cloak for Christmas December 19th, 2013

Quantum Dots/Rods

Oregon researchers glimpse pathway of sunlight to electricity: Collaboration with Lund University uses modified UO spectroscopy equipment to study 'maze' of connections in photoactive quantum dots December 19th, 2014

Scientists trace nanoparticles from plants to caterpillars: Rice University study examines how nanoparticles behave in food chain December 16th, 2014

TCL Launches World’s Most Advanced TV in the World’s Largest Market: New Quantum Dot TVs with Color IQ™ Optics Deliver OLED-Quality Color at a Fraction of the Price December 15th, 2014

Electron pairs on demand: Controlled emission and spatial splitting of electron pairs demonstrated December 4th, 2014

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE




  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More










ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project







© Copyright 1999-2014 7th Wave, Inc. All Rights Reserved PRIVACY POLICY :: CONTACT US :: STATS :: SITE MAP :: ADVERTISE