Spotting Cancer with a 27-Picosecond Camera

The Busy Human Bloodstream from the National Cancer Institute

Researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) are attempting to develop a system that offers early detection of cancer via a simple blood test.  The finished system will combine a powerful optical microscope with a ultra-fast camera to spot circulating tumor cells (CTCs) that break away from cancerous tumors.  The ultra-fast microscopic camera being used will be able to pass over other cells in the blood samples such as white and red blood cells, platelets and other particulates, and solely focus on detecting these CTCs.  Scientists hope the final product will be a quick and virtually painless cancer diagnostic test that can be easily administered during a routine doctor’s visit.

(Source: Scientific American)

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