Gaining a greater understanding of immune cells permits physicians to extra successfully diagnose, monitor, and deal with a variety of illnesses. Their complexity and sheer quantity make learning immune cells a troublesome problem, nevertheless.
Recently, researchers at the NYU Tandon School of Engineering, led by Assistant Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Weiqiang Chen, have been awarded a three-year grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to develop a brand new platform that mixes an environment friendly microfluidic immune cell isolation method and an ultra-sensitive nanoscale biosensor that may present biologists and clinicians with a brand new strategy to analyzing the proteins secreted from particular person human immune cells.
Collaborating with co-principal investigator Pengyu Chen of Auburn University, and Assistant Professor of Endocrinology Jose O. Aleman and Pathologist Matija Snuderl of NYU’s School of Medicine, Chen has devised a twin system that first separates a single immune cell from a microliter of blood (simply obtained with a easy pinprick) after which performs a multi-subset, multiplex practical immune evaluation—mapping its phenotype, figuring out its actual selection, and monitoring its perform.
“Current methods look at numerous cells and common the outcomes, which does not allow for a very granular examination,” Chen explains. “In addition to conducting our analysis on a single-cell level, we’re getting results about the immune status of patients in near real-time—allowing clinicians to test the efficacy of their therapies quickly enough to modify them if needed.”
Not solely will single-cell evaluation permit medical personnel to switch their remedy in a well timed sufficient approach to considerably enhance affected person prognosis in instances of immune system issues like HIV, sepsis, malaria, and tuberculosis, it might allow the deployment of personally tailor-made immunotherapy for sure illnesses, similar to glioblastoma, an aggressive type of most cancers.
“We hope to help open new doors in the field of immunotherapy by making treatment more agile, responsive, and personalized,” Chen says, “and to one day improve the outcome for countless patients.”