a leading developer of microfluidic systems for cellular analysis in life science
research, today announced that it has received a $200K grant from the National
Cancer Institute (NCI) for the development of a rare cell isolation platform
for diagnostic and research applications. The Phase One Small Business Innovation
Research Grant will enable Fluxion to further develop its innovative microfluidic
platform. The endpoints of this research include enhanced methods for detecting
circulating tumor cells that appear in very low concentrations in the early
stages of cancer.
Circulating tumor cells (CTCs) are cells that detach from a primary tumor and
circulate throughout the bloodstream. These cells are part of the metastasizing
process that leads to the progression of the disease. It is widely believed
that the detection of CTCs in the blood is an important factor in monitoring
an individual’s baseline condition and ongoing response to therapy. Despite
the high value of this information, these tests are rarely performed due to
the difficulty in tracking CTCs, which can appear in as little as one in one
billion blood cells. This newly awarded grant is focused on the development
of a microfluidic system that enhances the detection ability of CTCs as well
as other rare cell types. The principal aims of this grant include the design
of novel microfluidic systems for magnetic-bead based cell separations and the
associated control instrumentation.
"We are excited to receive this NCI grant for this compelling application
of our microfluidic technology," said Carolyn Conant, Ph.D., project leader
for the grant. "The ability to detect and isolate rare cells can have a
profound impact in the fields of oncology, immunology and neonatal care."
Fluxion Biosciences provides cellular analysis tools for use in critical life
science research and drug discovery applications. Fluxion’s proprietary
microfluidic platform enables precise functional analysis of individual cells
in a multiplexed format. Fluxion’s systems meet the rigorous demands of
life science and drug discovery scientists by providing an intuitive, easy-to-use
operating system for single-cell biology.
Posted July 22nd, 2009