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Keywords:

  • cancer diagnosis;
  • cell capture;
  • circulating tumor cell;
  • microfluidics;
  • nanostructured materials
Thumbnail image of graphical abstract

Finding a needle in a haystack: A new technology is demonstrated to enrich circulating tumor cells (CTCs) with high efficiency by integrating an antibody-coated silicon nanopillar (SiNP, see picture; gray) substrate with an overlaid polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) microfluidic chaotic mixer (turquoise). It shows significantly improved sensitivity in detecting rare CTCs from whole blood, thus providing an alternative for monitoring cancer progression.