Researchers have discovered a high voltage way of detecting cancer cells.
They use a series of chemical keys which recognise biomarkers on cancer cells and produce a chemical reaction when they join up.
Those keys make up a biosensing platform which converts the chemical reactions into an electrical current, a little like a cancer alarm system.
“We quantify the electrical current produced from the chemical reactions when the biosensor platform recognises the markers on the cell surface,” said Griffith University’s Dr Ian Cock.
Dr Cock and researchers from The University of Queensland have found a way to turbo-charge the process.
They’ve been able to piggyback magnetic nanoparticles onto the platforms to amplify the electrical current, and turn up the alarm, when cancer is detected.
The nanoparticles increased the signal for breast cancer cells six-fold.
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