Cancers cells now have a powerful adversary called 'magnetic hyperthermia' and it consists of clusters of magnetic nanoparticles. The experimental new method uses magnetic nanoparticles, injected directly into a tumor with a syringe and by using alternating magnetic current, the particles heat up and 'cook' the tumor.
Magnetic nanoparticles show great promise in clinical trials on patients with brain and prostate cancers. However, a powerful new treatment can only be as effective as the diagnosis proceeding it. Like a hunter wearing a blindfold, a technique hamstrung if it cannot aim or hit the target. Therefore if a patient is misdiagnosed, the following treatment can only be effective in cooking the wrong cells. Furthermore, even the most powerful anti-tumor therapies will struggle in cases where a diagnosis comes too late, once the cancers have spread to areas that can be very risky to insert a syringe.
As current diagnostic tools often rely on human analysis and interpretation, misdiagnoses and late diagnoses are all too common. Leading diagnostic technology company, ANCON Medical, comments on the reasons why an early and accurate diagnosis is key to getting the most out of a promising new treatment:
"If treating cancer were a coin, the actual treatment would be one side and the other side would consist of the diagnosis. For treatments to be effective, a rapid and precise diagnosis is the first step in order to provide targets for the treatment. ANCON Medical provides diagnoses in as little as ten minutes with their Nanoparticle Biomarker Tagging technology. NBT enables cancers to be detected in the breath of a patient and because it is a million times more sensitive than traditional methods, it is much better at giving an accurate diagnosis.
At a time when new methods for dealing with cancer are being developed at a blistering pace, technologies that can increase both the accuracy and speed of diagnoses are vital in the fight to target and eliminate cancers."