June 23, 2024


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Researchers use acoustics to boost … – Information Centre – Research & Innovation

Armed with a novel biosensor that employs acoustic waves to detect tumour DNA, an EU-funded venture could raise the precision and affordability of cancer prognosis and assistance make personalised therapy a truth for more patients.


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Most cancers is the 2nd most popular lead to of dying around the globe. There were being nine.6 million cancer-associated deaths in 2018 – amounting to 1 in six deaths – and this selection is predicted to increase by 70 {ae9868201ea352e02dded42c9f03788806ac4deebecf3e725332939dc9b357ad} above the up coming two a long time.

When it arrives to cancer prognosis and checking, a non-invasive system recognized as liquid biopsy has the opportunity to outperform typical strategies this sort of as good-tissue biopsies, ultrasound scans and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). With a very simple blood exam, liquid biopsies determine DNA introduced from cancer cells to expose a vast array of information about the tumour. On the other hand, the method is almost never used for prognosis simply because it continues to be laborious, inefficient and fairly high priced.

Enter the EU-funded Capture-U-DNA venture. The scientists included have devised a new liquid biopsy system, which could pave the way to more accurate prognosis and reduce the want for invasive good-tissue biopsies.

The novel and extremely-sensitive technology platform could also be used to monitor patients more reliably and cost”effectively, therefore paving the way in direction of more personalised therapy.

‘We’ve focused on detecting of the BRAF-V600E place mutation, which is introduced in numerous cancer kinds and has high medical importance for personalised remedy,’ claims venture coordinator Electra Gizeli of the Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology at FORTH in Greece.

‘Our technique successfully and reliably detects a single molecule of genomic DNA carrying this mutation in ten 000 regular DNA molecules – all in about two several hours from sample to end result.’

Sounding out a new system

At this time, blood serum collected in a liquid biopsy have to bear polymerase chain response (PCR) in get to amplify rare, little fragments of tumour DNA (ctDNA) to the place at which they can be detected.

The Capture-U-DNA platform identifies ctDNA applying the very sensitive allele-particular polymerase chain response (AS-PCR) assay, which only amplifies fragments of DNA that consist of the focus on mutation.

Scientists mixed this assay with their new acoustic wave biosensor, intended to detect little quantities of ctDNA and equipped to analyse various samples all through every single run. The amplified ctDNA is immobilised on the biosensor, foremost to the subsequent binding of liposomes (used to carry medication or other substances into overall body tissues) on the device’s surface area. It is this function that alters the acoustic signal and announces the detection of focus on DNA.

This process of sensing focus on DNA – which avoids the want for high priced optical areas used for typical detection applying fluorescence – is the central innovation of the Capture-U-DNA venture.

Proving the principle

‘We’re at present in the procedure of validating the technology applying tissue and plasma samples from melanoma, colorectal and lung cancer patients acquired by our medical partner, the University of Crete,’ claims Gizeli.

‘Results so significantly are incredibly promising. In the coming months, we’ll finish our validation research of detecting ctDNA from patients’ samples and within just the context of liquid biopsy.’

As the developer of the new acoustic platform and sensor array, AWSensors in Spain has strategies to commercialise the technology for even more laboratory research, as nicely as for use in the medical area.

The venture arrives below the FET Open Horizon 2020 programme which supports early-phase science and technology research into radically new long term technologies.