Macao university's cancer therapy enables drug screening results within 24 hrs

Updated 2017-08-23 11:33:56 Xinhua

A multidisciplinary research team from the University of Macau (UM) achieved a significant breakthrough in drug susceptibility test for cancer cell lines and human primary cancers, said UM health science faculty on Tuesday.

The UM said their research team combined the expertise in precision medicine, microfluidic chip, and image processing to shorten the analysis process within 24 hours, which laid a foundation for evidence-based drug susceptibility tests for precision cancer therapy.

The paper entitled "Drug Screening of Cancer Cell Lines and Human Primary Tumors Using Droplet Microfluidic" was recently published in the open access journal Scientific Reports under the Nature Publishing Group.

In this study, UM researchers tested the susceptibility of cells dissociated from cancer tissues to different drugs on a microfluidic chip developed by the State Key Laboratory of Analog and Mixed Signal VLSI (very-large-scale integration).

Exploitation of an artificial intelligence-based image processing technology developed by the Faculty of Science and Technology facilitated the observation of single cell viability in each microfluidic droplet post-treatment for the purpose of drug screening, and achieved results within 24 hours.

The UM said the resolution and statistical capability of this study opened the door to studying single cell differential drug response within heterogeneous cancers.

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