Fluorescence approach superior for abnormal cell detection

A research team led by scientists at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center (Houston, TX) have conducted what they believe to be the first study to use fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) to detect abnormal circulating cells with aberrations akin to found in non-small cell lung cancer.1 The researchers report that the FISH analysis detected up to 45,000 abnormal cells per milliliter of blood, while studies using the standard antibody-based epithelial method typically find fewer than 10 abnormal cells per milliliter.

Ruth Katz, professor in MD Anderson's Department of Pathology, says that because FISH is not limited to epithelial cells, it also picks up a variety of other cell types including mesenchymal cells (thought to be involved in the spread of primary cancer to other organs) and stem cell precursor cells.

The study used 12 probes (which target aberrations connected to lung cancer) to analyze 59 cases of non-small cell lung cancer and 24 controls, both smokers and non-smokers. Among the findings: Lung cancer patients had many times the number of these abnormal cells than volunteers in the closely matched control group, and cells containing certain abnormalities increase significantly as cancer progresses from early to advanced stages.

The researchers now plan to study larger numbers of patients to validate that circulating abnormal cells are related to disease stage, relapse and survival. They also will evaluate epithelial, mesenchymal, stem cell and blood and lymphocyte markers, combined with FISH, to track down the origin of circulating abnormal cells and their associated traits. Work is also underway to develop a clinical test based on FISH.

1. R. Katz et al., Clin Cancer Res 16 (15): 3976-3987 (2010)

More BioOptics World Current Issue Articles
More BioOptics World Archives Issue Articles

Get All the BioOptics World News Delivered to Your Inbox

Subscribe to BioOptics World Magazine or email newsletter today at no cost and receive the latest news and information.

 Subscribe Now
Related Articles

New bioimaging technique offers clear view of nervous system

Scientists at Ludwig-Maximilians University have developed a technique for turning the body of a deceased rodent entirely transparent, revealing the central nervous system in unprecedented clarity....

Fluorescent jellyfish proteins light up unconventional laser

Safer lasers to map your cells could soon be in the offing -- all thanks to the humble jellyfish. Conventional lasers, like the pointer you might use to entertain your cat, produce light by emittin...

Fluorescence microscopy helps provide new insight into how cancer cells metastasize

By using fluorescence microscopy, scientists have discovered an alternate theory on how some cancer cells metastasize.

In vivo imaging method visualizes bone-resorbing cell function in real time

In vivo imaging can visualize sites where osteoclasts (bone-resorbing cells) were in the process of resorbing bone.


Neuro15 exhibitors meet exacting demands: Part 2

Increasingly, neuroscientists are working with researchers in disciplines such as chemistry and p...

Why be free?

A successful career contributed to keeping OpticalRayTracer—an optical design software program—fr...

LASER Munich 2015 is bio-bent

LASER World of Photonics 2015 included the European Conferences on Biomedical Optics among its si...

White Papers

Understanding Optical Filters

Optical filters can be used to attenuate or enhance an image, transmit or reflect specific wavele...

How can I find the right digital camera for my microscopy application?

Nowadays, image processing is found in a wide range of optical microscopy applications. Examples ...



Twitter- BioOptics World

Copyright © 2007-2016. PennWell Corporation, Tulsa, OK. All Rights Reserved.PRIVACY POLICY | TERMS AND CONDITIONS