Home » Uncategorized » Micro-NMR Device Uses Smartphone to Diagnose Cancer Faster, More Accurately
portable-Nuclear-Magnetic-Resonance-device

Micro-NMR Device Uses Smartphone to Diagnose Cancer Faster, More Accurately

It can be the longest and most agonizing three days of a person’s life: You’ve found a suspicious lump, the doctor’s taken samples…

And now you wait, unsure of whether or not you have cancer.

To make matters worse, when that call finally does come from the pathology lab and you expect your results – positive or negative. Anything. Just some closure and a word to start making plans. But instead of results, the pathologist tells you the tests are inconclusive and you’ll have to start the whole testing and waiting process again.

This scenario may soon be a thing of the past thanks to Dr. Ralph Weissleder and his colleagues at the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. The researchers have developed a miniaturized Nuclear Magnetic Resonance scanner, or micro-NMR, which works with a smartphone to effectively increase both the speed and accuracy of tumor diagnoses.

Capable of diagnosing a tumor in less than an hour with more than 96 per cent accuracy, the system is a huge improvement over the pathology process’ 74-84 per cent accuracy rate. Now, the doctor can take tiny samples from several areas of a lump using a fine needle, label the samples with magnetic nanoparticles and inject the concoction into the scanner. Inside, the NMR identifies different molecules and cancer-related proteins by the way they react to magnetic fields and the magnetic nanoparticles.

The doctor then connects the scanner to a smartphone, loads the accompanying app and analyzes the nine protein markers in the test results to produce a diagnosis.

After two rounds of field tests with 50 patients the first time and 20 the second, the entire procedure – test and analysis – took less than an hour on average, and produced accurate results in 96 and 100 per cent of patients, respectively. Weissleder credits much of the accuracy to being able to sample several sites in each tumor.

The micro-NMR may eventually be used to test whether or not cancer patients are responding to drugs during treatment, wrote the team in the journal Science Translational Medicine.

[PhysOrg via AAAS, Image Credit: Dr. Ralph Weissleder]

About Raggy Jin

Check Also

wii-oculus-rift-hoverboard

Try Oculus Rift And Wii To Roam Around On The Back To The Future Hoverboard

Check out how you can fly in virtual space by using an Oculus Rift and a Wii Balance Board.

131129-amz

Amazon Appstore for Android Holiday Deals, Including Free Apps

There are tons of deals from the Amazon Appstore that will be offered starting now and throughout the holiday shopping season. They say that they will have "hundreds of titles that are eitehr free... or available between 50-90% off" the regular price.

131129-google

Black Friday: Google Play Store Apps, Games and Content on Sale All Weekend

Case in point, if you head over to the Google Play Store right now, you'll find that Google is celebrating all Cyber Weekend with discounts on all sorts of content. This includes many popular apps and games

131129-gtab

Black Friday Deal: Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 10.1-Inch for $100 Off

Did you manage to score any epic Black Friday deals this morning? Are you still ...

131128-diy

Arduino Co-Creator Releases Plans for $200 DIY Mobile Phone

Mellis was one of the people who came up with the now hugely popular Arduino platform and now he has come up with plans for people to build their own cell phone for about $200 in parts.

131128-apple

No Discounts for Apple Black Friday, Just Free Gift Cards

If you were hoping to save yourself some cash as you brave the Black Friday shopping crowds, you'll want to go somewhere other than the official Apple Stores.