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Researchers give more insight into detection of breast cancer

ANI Feb 22, 2024

Scientists have created a saliva test that screens for breast cancer and has shown encouraging results in preclinical testing.

According to researchers from the University of Florida and National Yang-Ming Chiao Tung University in Taiwan, a new handheld gadget detects breast cancer indicators from a tiny sample of spit.

Their findings were published in the Journal of Vacuum Science & Technology B.

"Imagine medical staff conducting breast cancer screening in communities or hospitals," said Hsiao-Hsuan Wan, a UF doctoral student in the Department of Chemical Engineering and the study's lead author.

"Our device is an excellent choice because it is portable -- about the size of your hand -- and reusable. The testing time is under five seconds per sample, which makes it highly efficient."

The new tool works by placing a saliva sample on a test strip, which is treated with specific antibodies that respond to cancer biomarkers.

Electrical impulses are sent to contact points on the biosensor device. Signals are measured and translated into digital information about how much biomarker is present. The results are quick and easy to interpret, Wan said.

During testing, the device distinguished between healthy breast tissue, early breast cancer, and advanced breast cancer in a small group of 21 women.

Their biosensor design uses common components like glucose testing strips and the open-source hardware-software platform Arduino.

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