Scientists Invent ‘Pen’ Which Can Detect Cancer in 10 Seconds



Scientists at the University of Texas have come up with a quick and unique way of helping cancer surgeons know much tissue to remove from a patient.

A handheld device which can identify cancerous tissue in 10 seconds has been created by scientists at the University of Texas.

Tests, published in Science Translational Medicine, suggest the technology is accurate 96 percent of the time.

The inventors of the MasSpec Pen say it could be used during surgery to make sure that all of a tumor has been removed and would avoid the “heartbreak” of leaving cancer in place, where it could potentially start growing again.

​The Texas scientists, led by Dr. Jialing Zhang, are not the only team working on such a device.

The Imperial College London,  claimed to  have developed a knife which “smells” cancerous tissue while another team at Harvard are using lasers to analyze brain cancers.

“Exciting research like this has the potential to speed up how quickly doctors can determine if a tumor is cancerous or not and learn about its characteristics,” said Dr. Aine McCarthy, from Cancer Research UK.

“Gathering this kind of information quickly during surgery could help doctors match the best treatment options for patients sooner,” she added.

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