'Breast on a Chip'
Purdue University researchers are studying new approaches to breast cancer treatment that may include the use of nanoparticles to detect and destroy tumor cells. They've developed a tiny breast-on-a-chip, a U-shaped mold that contains the delicate cells that line mammary ducts. This "engineered organ" will allow researchers to study nanomedical treatments, including the use of magnetic nanoparticles that attach to and illuminate cancer cells. By reversing the magnetic field, researchers hope to retract excess nanoparticles. If successful, nanomedical treatments could prove far less harmful to cancer patients than today's chemotherapy.