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New Method for Tumor Progression Visualization

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Scientists from the Imperial College London and University College London have collaborated to develop a new method for tumor and other cancerous progression tracking without any surgery. The tech is called optical projection tomography and helps to avoid a great deal of animal testing. 

Optical projection tomography, with no need for spotlight illumination, can be repeatedly used to image the target animals whilst bringing little outside force to increase disease progression or internal surrounding changes, which further facilitates a decreased requirement for animal testing.

The core point of the new tech lies in the application of genetically fluorescent labeling. Blood vessels and tumors will be presented in color, highly obvious for tracking, inspection and progression analysis.

Zebrafish were the chosen animal model in the research stages, as the species shares a high level of genetic similarity in tumors with that of humans from the formation to progression. Furthermore, Zebrafish have the beneficial characteristic of a relatively short reproductive cycle, which helps to shorten the research time span. By breeding the Zebrafish labeled with genes that can express blood vessels in red with the ones labeled with genes expressed in green tumors their blood vessels and tumors will present respectively in red and green with a trigger compound-doxycycline. This makes direct visualization very easy.

3D images of the tumors can be gained with much less cost and time, providing more channels for studies.

Another application where the tech can play an important role is drug testing. Trials on animals like Zebrafish will enable quick results on the drugs profile as pathologies like cancer development  can be fully and accurately tracked, vastly shortening the time needed with traditional methods.

Being non-invasive, easy to use and time efficient, the tech will be widely employed in both chemistry and biology studies, especially for drug design and development.

Fluorescent labeling has been made in collaboration with many other technologies for more advanced applications; optical projection tomography is one of the typical examples. Protein fluorescence labeling, peptide fluorescent labeling and antibody fluorescent labeling will be more frequently involved with their easy access to visually capture sites of interest in organisms whilst maintaining their integrity.

It may also be bonded to be used with immune checkpoint inhibitors to see how they function to influence the immune system, with the long term goal of fighting cancer, which is quite abstract with the present techs. Or it can be used to combine with hsp90 inhibitors for tumor control, allowing them to be observed in action. .

About Author
BOC Sciences, a chemicals supplier, is headquartered in Long Island City, New York. With more than a decade’s experience in the field, the company is good at providing timely and accurate products and services. Fluorescent labeling, as well as isotope labeling on the solid foundation of synthesis technology, is the key service of BOC Sciences.