Diamonds helped researchers "light up" early cancers on MR

Diamonds helped researchers "light up" early cancers on MR

September 12, 2015

A new method to better detect early staged-stage tumors was discovered at the University of Sydney's ARC Centre of Excellence for Engineered Quantum Systems. According to university statement, it relies on using nanodiamonds to succeed. Full research was published in Nature Communications journal.

"We knew nanodiamonds were of interest for delivering drugs during chemotherapy because they are largely non-toxic and non-reactive," David Reilly, leader of university’s team responsible for discovery, stated.

Reilly and his colleagues tackled a difficult task: use tiny diamonds to “light up” carcinous tumors before they develop and start threating life.

"By attaching hyperpolarized diamonds to molecules targeting cancers, the technique can allow tracking of the molecules' movement in the body," says Ewa Rej, the lead author of the paper.

The team hopes that someday they and other physicists will be able to use the method to find cancers that are hard to spot in the earliest stage, before they start endangering life.