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Interstitial pressure inside a tumor is often quite high compared to normal body tissue and may impede the delivery of chemotherapeutic agents as well as decrease the effectiveness of radiation therapy. Medications can temporarily decrease tumor pressure, but identifying the optimal time to initiate treatment, when tumor pressure is lowest, can be very difficult. Now, a team of scientists from Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN, has developed a unique sensor that can wirelessly relay pressure readings from inside a tumor.

Wireless interstitial fluid pressure sensor shown to scale on a dime. (Credit: Babak Ziaie, PhD, Purdue University)
Patients who have tumors with high interstitial pressure often receive a less than adequate dose of chemotherapy or other types of anti-cancer drugs. In addition, high interstitial pressure can also contribute to low oxygen levels in tumors, which can negate the effects of radiation therapy.

Using special microfabrication techniques, the team created a miniaturized wireless pressure sensor that can be implanted into a tumor to generate interstitial pressure readings without the use of a needle and wirelessly transmit those readings.

For more information, visit www.medicaldesignbriefs.com/component/content/article/1104-mdb/news/20649.