New Promising, Early Diagnostic Options for Colon Cancer

June 12, 2009

(ChattahBox)—Researchers from Tel Aviv University are at the forefront of developing new diagnostic tools and testing for colorectal cancer, which could detect the presence of cancer biomarkers earlier and instantly at the point-of-care. These new diagnostic techniques have the potential to save millions of lives, as colon cancer is often not caught until it’s well advanced.

Lead researcher Sefi Vernick, a doctoral student of the Department of Physical Electronics at Tel Aviv University, attached a “lab-on-a-chip” to an endoscope used in colonoscopies. The chip itself is the size of a tiny computer chip, but contained on that chip are powerful real-time diagnostic tools.

The endoscope lab allows doctors to see and take samples from polyps, obtaining instant results to detect the presence of cancerous biomarkers. The tool then allows the removal of the polyps found in a patient’s colon.

The tool provides more accurate biomarker testing than is currently available, capable of detecting up to four different cancer biomarkers.

Cancer biomarkers can be found inside the polyps or tumor, as well as in blood and urine. The chip is equipped with an electrochemical biosensor that binds to and detects colorectal cancer biomarkers.

Vernick and his team of researchers are also busy developing a home testing kit to detect colon cancer biomarkers in a patient’s blood, which can be quickly sent to a doctor or to a lab online for analysis, similar to glucose home testing kits used by diabetic patients.

With an eventual three-pronged diagnostic attack on colon cancer, colonoscopies, point of care testing with the lab on a stick and backed up by home testing kits, more patients having colon cancer should be diagnosed earlier, increasing survival rates.



One Response to “New Promising, Early Diagnostic Options for Colon Cancer”

  1. Peritoneal Mesothelioma Support on June 12th, 2009 2:59 pm

    Staying up-to-date with cancer diagnostic tools and methodologies is important. You never know when a diagnostic option for one cancer can be effective for Mesothelioma as well.

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