Research may lead to improved cancer treatments

For the first time, Boston researchers say they can sample tumor cells directly from the blood of patients and then count and analyze them in real time This is important because it allows them to see how a patient's tumor cell is responding to a drug.

The experimental test relies on a tiny silicon chip that captures tumor cells. It can quickly show when tumor cells become resistant to a certain drug, saving patients precious time.

The technology was developed at Massachusetts General Hospital.

Researchers say if all goes well the test could be available within the next few years.

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