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Sci Rep. 2019 Sep 24;9(1):13766. doi: 10.1038/s41598-019-50241-w.

High-Throughput Automated Microscopy of Circulating Tumor Cells.

Author information

1
Delee Corp., Mountain View, CA, 94041, USA.
2
Departamento de Bioquímica y Medicina Molecular, Facultad de Medicina, Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León, Monterrey, 64460, Mexico.
3
Centro de Biotecnología-FEMSA, Escuela de Ingeniería y Ciencias, Tecnologico de Monterrey, Monterrey, 64849, Mexico.
4
Departamento de Bioingeniería, Escuela de Ingeniería y Ciencias, Tecnologico de Monterrey, Monterrey, 64849, Mexico.
5
Departamento de Mecatrónica e Ingeniería Eléctrica, Escuela de Ingeniería y Ciencias, Tecnologico de Monterrey, Monterrey, 64849, Mexico.
6
Servicio de Urología, Hospital Universitario "Dr. José Eleuterio González", Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León, Monterrey, 64460, Mexico.
7
Delee Corp., Mountain View, CA, 94041, USA. alejandro@delee.bio.
8
Delee Corp., Mountain View, CA, 94041, USA. jwongcam@umd.edu.
9
Department of Physics, Joint Quantum Institute and Joint Center for Quantum Information and Computer Science, University of Maryland, College Park, MD, 20742, USA. jwongcam@umd.edu.

Abstract

Circulating tumor cells (CTCs) have the potential of becoming the gold standard marker for cancer diagnosis, prognosis and monitoring. However, current methods for its isolation and characterization suffer from equipment variability and human operator error that hinder its widespread use. Here we report the design and construction of a fully automated high-throughput fluorescence microscope that enables the imaging and classification of cancer cells that were labeled by immunostaining procedures. An excellent agreement between our machine vision-based approach and a state-of-the-art microscopy equipment was achieved. Our integral approach provides a path for operator-free and robust analysis of cancer cells as a standard clinical practice.

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