Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors


Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


DHgate

Home > Press > Microsensors Offer First Look at Whether Cell Mass Affects Growth Rate

Abstract:
Researchers at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, have developed a new kind of microsensor to answer one of the weightiest questions in biology - the relationship between cell mass and growth rate.

Microsensors Offer First Look at Whether Cell Mass Affects Growth Rate

Bethesda, MD | Posted on December 17th, 2010

The team, led by Rashid Bashir, published its results in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Dr. Bashir is the co-principal investigator of one of six Cancer Nanotechnology Training Centers funded by the National Cancer Institute Alliance for Nanotechnology in Cancer.

Biologists have long questioned whether cells grow at a fixed rate or whether growth accelerates as mass increases. But the mechanics of cellular growth and division are important not only for basic biology, but also for diagnostics, drug development, tissue engineering and understanding cancer. For example, documenting these processes could help identify specific drug targets to slow or stop the uncontrolled growth of cancer cells.

Previous studies have used aggregate populations of cells, making it impossible to determine patterns of individual cell growth. With their small, sensitive microsensors, Dr. Bashir and his colleagues were able to track individual colon cancer cells' masses and divisions over time. The investigators found that the cells they studied did grow faster as they grew heavier, rather than growing at the same rate throughout the cell cycle.

Each microsensor is a tiny, suspended platform made in silicon on a chip. The suspended scale vibrates at a particular frequency, which changes when mass is added. As a cell's mass increases, the sensor's resonant frequency goes down. "As you make the structure smaller and smaller, it becomes more sensitive to the mass that's placed on it," Dr. Bashir said. "A cell is a few nanograms in mass or smaller. If we can make our sensor small enough, then it becomes sensitive to cell mass."

The researchers created an array of hundreds of sensors on a chip. They can culture cells on the chip in much the same way that scientists grow cells in a dish. Thus, they can collect data from many cells at once, while still recording individual cellular measurements. Another advantage of these microsensors is the ability to image cells with microscopes while cells grow on the sensors. Researchers can track the cells visually, opening the possibilities of tracking various cellular processes in conjunction with changes in mass. "Imaging acts as a control. You can actually watch the cell divide and grow and correlate that to your measurements. It really validates what you have," explained Dr. Bashir. "There are lots of optical measurements that now you can integrate with mass sensing."

Next, the researchers plan to extend the study to other cell lines, and explore more optical measurements and fluorescent markers. "These technologies can also be used for diagnostic purposes, or for screening. For example, we could study cell growth and mass and changes in the cell structure based on drugs or chemicals," Bashir said.

This work is detailed in a paper titled, "Measurement of adherent cell mass and growth." An abstract of this paper is available at the journal's website.

View abstract at www.pnas.org/content/107/48/20691

####

About NCI Alliance for Nanotechnology in Cancer
To help meet the goal of reducing the burden of cancer, the National Cancer Institute (NCI), part of the National Institutes of Health, is engaged in efforts to harness the power of nanotechnology to radically change the way we diagnose, treat and prevent cancer.

The NCI Alliance for Nanotechnology in Cancer is a comprehensive, systematized initiative encompassing the public and private sectors, designed to accelerate the application of the best capabilities of nanotechnology to cancer.

Currently, scientists are limited in their ability to turn promising molecular discoveries into benefits for cancer patients. Nanotechnology can provide the technical power and tools that will enable those developing new diagnostics, therapeutics, and preventives to keep pace with today’s explosion in knowledge.

For more information, please click here

Copyright © NCI Alliance for Nanotechnology in Cancer

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

News and information

Scientists illuminate a hidden regulator in gene transcription: New super-resolution technique visualizes important role of short-lived enzyme clusters May 27th, 2016

Doubling down on Schrödinger's cat May 27th, 2016

Finding a new formula for concrete: Researchers look to bones and shells as blueprints for stronger, more durable concrete May 26th, 2016

Deep Space Industries and SFL selected to provide satellites for HawkEye 360’s Pathfinder mission: The privately-funded space-based global wireless signal monitoring system will be developed by Deep Space Industries and UTIAS Space Flight Laboratory May 26th, 2016

Govt.-Legislation/Regulation/Funding/Policy

Scientists illuminate a hidden regulator in gene transcription: New super-resolution technique visualizes important role of short-lived enzyme clusters May 27th, 2016

Doubling down on Schrödinger's cat May 27th, 2016

Harnessing solar and wind energy in one device could power the 'Internet of Things' May 26th, 2016

Thermal modification of wood and a complex study of its properties by magnetic resonance May 26th, 2016

Possible Futures

Doubling down on Schrödinger's cat May 27th, 2016

Harnessing solar and wind energy in one device could power the 'Internet of Things' May 26th, 2016

Thermal modification of wood and a complex study of its properties by magnetic resonance May 26th, 2016

Finding a new formula for concrete: Researchers look to bones and shells as blueprints for stronger, more durable concrete May 26th, 2016

Academic/Education

Graphene: Progress, not quantum leaps May 23rd, 2016

Smithsonian Science Education Center and National Space Society Team Up for Next-Generation Space Education Program "Enterprise In Space" May 11th, 2016

The University of Colorado Boulder, USA, combines Raman spectroscopy and nanoindentation for improved materials characterisation May 9th, 2016

Albertan Science Lab Opens in India May 7th, 2016

Nanomedicine

Scientists illuminate a hidden regulator in gene transcription: New super-resolution technique visualizes important role of short-lived enzyme clusters May 27th, 2016

Supercrystals with new architecture can enhance drug synthesis May 24th, 2016

Nanoscale Trojan horses treat inflammation May 24th, 2016

Tiny packages may pack powerful treatment for brain tumors: Nanocarrier provides efficient delivery of chemotherapeutic drug May 23rd, 2016

Sensors

The next generation of carbon monoxide nanosensors May 26th, 2016

Dartmouth team creates new method to control quantum systems May 24th, 2016

Electronic device detects molecules linked to cancer, Alzheimer's and Parkinson's: An inexpensive portable biosensor has been developed by researchers at Brazil's National Nanotechnology Laboratory with FAPESP's support May 20th, 2016

Making organs transparent to improve nanomedicine (video) May 13th, 2016

Announcements

Scientists illuminate a hidden regulator in gene transcription: New super-resolution technique visualizes important role of short-lived enzyme clusters May 27th, 2016

Doubling down on Schrödinger's cat May 27th, 2016

Finding a new formula for concrete: Researchers look to bones and shells as blueprints for stronger, more durable concrete May 26th, 2016

Deep Space Industries and SFL selected to provide satellites for HawkEye 360’s Pathfinder mission: The privately-funded space-based global wireless signal monitoring system will be developed by Deep Space Industries and UTIAS Space Flight Laboratory May 26th, 2016

Nanobiotechnology

Scientists illuminate a hidden regulator in gene transcription: New super-resolution technique visualizes important role of short-lived enzyme clusters May 27th, 2016

Supercrystals with new architecture can enhance drug synthesis May 24th, 2016

Nanoscale Trojan horses treat inflammation May 24th, 2016

Tiny packages may pack powerful treatment for brain tumors: Nanocarrier provides efficient delivery of chemotherapeutic drug May 23rd, 2016

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







Car Brands
Buy website traffic