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TODAY JULY 20, 2019

Cancer cells can be detected before tumors grow

Cancer cells can be detected before tumors grow Cancer is a dangerous disease. Yet, if it is detected early, it can be stopped. University of Missouri researchers conduct research to detect melanoma cancer at the cellular level, i.e. long before tumors form. Commercial production of a device developed at MU that measures melanoma using photoacoustics, or laser-induced ultrasound, will soon be available to scientists and academia for cancer studies. Detecting melanoma as early as possible is very important since this cancer spreads very quickly. The existing methods allow cancer recognition only as the cancer tumor is as big as at least 1 mm. The new device developed by Prof. John Viator and his colleagues allows to ''listen'' to cancer cells and detect even single cells, before they have a chance to multiply and produce tumors. The device is going cost just a few hundred dollars and is awaiting FDA approval.

The drawback of the system is that it is able to detect cancer cells only in the blood stream. It is not possible to use it, at least not in its current design, to screen the skin of a person and to tell if melanoma cells are present on the skin.

Cancer cells can be detected before tumors grow

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