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You won’t be able to catch your supper with this fishing rod — because at just 6mm long, it’s designed to catch and kill cancers before they aggressively attack the brain.
Cancer surgery is tough. Even with high-powered microscopes, surgeons have a very difficult time distinguishing cancer cells from healthy cells. But these new glasses developed by Washington University, St Louis could change all that.
One of the most exciting findings in cancer research is the ability to identify cancerous cells by the volatile odour molecules they give off. Diagnostic machines, scalpels, and even specially trained dogs have been used to identify cancer this way. We can add fruit flies to that list now: scientists have bred a strain whose antennae glow when they smell cancer.
Somewhere 11,000 years ago, something weird happened to a dog. It got cancer — and the really damn freaky part is that the cancer could survive even outside of its canine host. That unknown dog is long dead now, but its tumour cells have improbably lived on, continuing to sprout on the genitalia of dogs all over the world.
Traditional mammography machines — besides being uncomfortable — rely on ionizing radiation to image a patient’s breasts. And as all we all know, radiation ironically increases the risk of cancer developing. So a company called Delphinus Medical Technologies has developed a safer alternative called the SoftVue that instead uses ultrasonic sound waves bouncing around inside a large water tank.
Looks like there’s a new candidate for most awesome supermaterial in town. Dentists may soon start fighting bone loss by covering our teeth in itty bitty nanodiamonds, making repairing teeth quicker, cheaper and much less painful.
It almost sounds too good to be true: Researchers have developed a tiny sponge that can reprogram immune cells to attack cancer. The treatment is less invasive than surgery and potentially more effective too. And with human trials beginning this week, there’s a chance it will soon be available for everyone.