Professors Ruggiero and Tanner receive seed grant

Author: Christopher Kolda

Professors Steve Ruggiero and Carol Tanner have received a seed grant from the Walther Cancer Foundation and the Harper Cancer Center to fund work on a second-generation optical assay system for performing optical analyses of whole cells on an individual basis. This grant follows the recent observation by their group (N.Sun, et al, Anal. Biochem. 484, 58, 2015) that cancerous cells have distinct particle-size distributions as compared to normal cells, an effect that can be measured from their optical spectra using Light Transmission Spectroscopy, a technique developed here at Notre Dame. Results to date have been obtained by studies of aggregates of many cells and their contents. The new funding will allow their group to extend this technique to individual cells, and possibly even allow for researchers to distinguish among different cancer sub-types using spectroscopic techniques.