This method can detect cancer in single cells by using probes made of silicone nanotubes without using chemical detectors at the early stages of the disease.
Researchers have always studied the behavior of single cells in the field of cancer because it results in valuable findings to understand the behavior of these cells. In this research, a method based on electrical response of the cell to mechanical stimulant was used as a new method in the detection of cancerous cells.
In fact, there is a relation between the activity of actins (one of the important parts of cytoskeleton, which plays role in the mechanical behavior of the cell and its growth and proliferation) and electrical activity of the cell membrane. The relation is damaged in cancerous cells, which is a good sign to detect cancerous cells.
Dr. Mohammad Abdolahad, one of the researchers, elaborated on the mechanism of this method, and said, “A probe made of silicone nanotubes has been designed in this research in addition to electrically activated glass micropipette. This nanoprobe imposes mechanical stress while the cell is pulled by the micropipette. Then it receives and studies the signal created by the cell. In fact, the signal is taken directly from the cell and it is based on the direct connection of electrical impedance and cell mechanical stimulation, which is used for the early detection of cancer. Therefore, a new pattern can be presented for the detection of cancerous cells.”
This system can be installed on IVF microscopes. Therefore, it provides the chance to study electromechanical properties of single cells.