DEC 11, 2015 4:38 AM PST

Sound Waves and Cancer Cells


Treating cancer is difficult. It involves toxic chemical, high doses of radiation and often surgery. All of this takes a toll on the patient. What if cancer treatment could be less invasive and less damaging? A team from MIT is trying to do just that with sound waves.

Sound waves can pass through the body without damaging healthy cells. The team at MIT, working with other researchers from Carnegie Mellon and Penn State has developed a transducer that emits a combination of sound waves. Some at a high pressure, some at a low pressure. When healthy blood cells carry cancer cells along with them, the cancer can travel throughout the body. The sound waves being investigated at MIT appear to separate the cancer cells from typical red blood cells because the sound waves act differently on the two kinds of cells. This is due to their shape. Sound causes the cells to vibrate and the oddly shaped cancer cells wind up being essentially shaken out and away from healthy cells. This video shows how the project is going and what the researchers hope to do with this
About the Author
  • I'm a writer living in the Boston area. My interests include cancer research, cardiology and neuroscience. I want to be part of using the Internet and social media to educate professionals and patients in a collaborative environment.
You May Also Like
DEC 09, 2019
Space & Astronomy
DEC 09, 2019
How Close is SpaceX to Sending Humans to Space?
NASA is one of the world’s most capable space agencies, but a crippling budget prevents it from developing a new space vehicle of its own. Instead, N...
DEC 16, 2019
Plants & Animals
DEC 16, 2019
Sloths Are More Interesting Than You Might Think...
The humble sloth – an animal that is renowned for its slowness. In fact, it’s considered one of the slowest mammals on the entire planet. But w...
DEC 22, 2019
Space & Astronomy
DEC 22, 2019
How Astronomers Measure Distances to Stars
Extra stellar systems are so far away from our own that we couldn’t even hope of developing a tape measure long enough to determine how far away they...
DEC 30, 2019
Plants & Animals
DEC 30, 2019
Are Blue Animals Truly Blue?
Animals come in all sorts of colors, and while the animal kingdom has most of the rainbow’s colors at its disposal, there are a few exceptions. Some...
DEC 31, 2019
Space & Astronomy
DEC 31, 2019
Why Does This Star Dim Unpredictably?
KIC 8462852, also known as Tabby’s Star or the infamous ‘alien megastructure star,’ is peculiar because the star’s light seems to d...
JAN 15, 2020
Health & Medicine
JAN 15, 2020
The "Normal" Body Temperature Has Decreased
Did you know that the standard human body temperature of 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit was established in 1868? A few modern studies have called this figure into...
Loading Comments...