Lab-on-chip assay of tumour markers and human papilloma virus for cervical cancer detection at the point-of-care.
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Cervical cancer affects over half a million people worldwide each year, the majority of whom are in resource-limited settings where cytology screening is not available. As persistent human papilloma virus (HPV) infections are a key causative factor, detection of HPV strains now complements cytology where screening services exist. This work demonstrates the efficacy of a handheld Lab-on-Chip (LoC) device, with an external sample extraction process, in detecting cervical cancer from biopsy samples. The device is based on Ion-Sensitive Field-Effect Transistor (ISFET) sensors used in combination with loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) assays, to amplify HPV DNA and human telomerase reverse transcriptase (hTERT) mRNA. These markers were selected because of their high levels of expression in cervical cancer cells, but low to nil expression in normal cervical tissue. The achieved analytical sensitivity for the molecular targets resolved down to a single copy per reaction for the mRNA markers, achieving a limit of detection of 10<sup>2</sup> for hTERT. In the tissue samples, HPV-16 DNA was present in 4/5 malignant and 2/5 benign tissues, with HPV-18 DNA being present in 1/5 malignant and 1/5 benign tissues. hTERT mRNA was detected in all malignant and no benign tissues, with the demonstrated pilot data to indicate the potential for using the LoC in cervical cancer screening in resource-limited settings on a large scale.
Uterine Cervical Neoplasms
Early Detection of Cancer
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Scientific reports, 2022, 12 (1), pp. 8750 - ?