Much like wildlife biologists studying the comings and goings of animals
in nature with devices like radiocollars, cancer investigators would relish
in the opportunity to track malignant cells and watch them in action. If they
could observe how tumor cells grow and spread, they might be able to come
up with effective treatment strategies.
Now researchers are able to see the minute-by-minute activities of cancer
cells, thanks to a new technology that uses fluorescent inorganic nanocrystals
that glow under UV light. Two new studies highlight the utility of these tiny
particles, called quantum dots.
Hampton T. Researchers Use Dots to Light Up Tumor Cells. JAMA. 2004;292(16):1944-1945. doi:10.1001/jama.292.16.1944