Description: This technology
presents a novel cancer diagnosis and treatment method using
polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) to enrich sub-populations of cells in melanoma. It
also introduces a new use of microbubbles formed in PDMS as a tool for
determining the clonogenic potential (the ability of a single cancer stem cell
to give rise to a clone) of tumor cells.
Applications: These assays could
be used to enrich and identify cancer stem cells from cell lines, human primary
tumors and metastatic tumors. Identification and recovery of these cells could
lead to new diagnostic and therapeutic treatments for metastatic cancer.
Furthermore, the technology can be used to enrich rare cells from a mixed
Advantages: These assays, in
addition to being simple, cost effective, and rapid, provide humane alternatives
to troublesome animal testing for determining the clonogenic potential of a
mixed cell sample. This technology also provides a label-free method for
identifying clones which have the ability to multiply easily. Most importantly,
through the use of this technology and gene/protein expression profiling
methods, new targeting models can be developed, providing a great opportunity
for new cancer drugs to be discovered.