Biocomputer kills cancer cells, spares healthy onesSeptember 4th, 2011 - 3:15 pm ICT by IANS
London, Sep 4 (IANS) Scientists have designed a biocomputer which can identify and kill cancer cells without harming the healthy ones.
Biocomputers use biologically derived materials such as DNA or proteins to perform programmed functions.
Synthetic biologist Yaakov Benenson of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich collaborated with Ron Weiss of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, US, to design a multi-gene synthetic “circuit” to distinguish between cancer and healthy cells.
This circuit works by sampling cancer-specific molecular factors and their concentration, ensuring a highly precise detection, the journal Science reports.
The scientists tested the gene network in two types of cultured human cells: cervical cancer cells, called HeLa cells, and normal cells, acording to a Swiss Federal Institute statement.
The genetic biocomputer, when introduced into different cell types, destroyed only HeLa cells, but spared the healthy ones.
- Meet the woman whose cancer cells helped save millions of lives - Oct 04, 2010
- New study confirms smoking, cancer link - Oct 10, 2010
- New process to 'program' cancer cell death created - Sep 08, 2010
- Teardrop protein has jaws to chew up harmful bacteria - Jan 20, 2012
- Vaccine-delivering nanoparticles may help fight HIV, malaria - Feb 23, 2011
- Groundbreaking technology to detect Alzheimer's developed - Jan 07, 2011
- New discovery may help in the fight against ovarian cancer - Feb 04, 2011
- Stretchy patch could help repair wounded skin, damaged arteries - Apr 02, 2011
- Breast cancer cases in India to double by 2015: Experts - Oct 19, 2011
- Chinese medicinal plant extract may help develop anticancer drugs - Mar 04, 2011
- Intestinal stem cells offer clues to colon cancer origin and relapse - Mar 18, 2011
- Gene behind rare skin cancer that heals itself discovered - Mar 11, 2011
- Genetic change helps lung tumors spread to other parts of the body - Apr 07, 2011
- Gene to sabotage breast cancer cells - Feb 28, 2011
- Stem cell advance paves way for novel treatments for brain diseases - Dec 08, 2010
Tags: benenson, biocomputer, biologist, cervical cancer, cervical cancer cells, concentration, cultured human cells, gene network, hela cells, institute of technology, journal science, massachusetts institute of technology, molecular factors, precise detection, proteins, ron weiss, sampling, swiss federal institute, swiss federal institute of technology, zurich