Nov 17, 2018 | Updated: 03:14 AM EDT

Glow Sticks Developed By Scientists For Cancer Diagnosis

May 02, 2017 01:29 AM EDT

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Glow sticks, also known as light sticks, are known to use when the electricity is out or when one is going to a concert. Now, these sticks might have a more beneficial use to the medical field by diagnosing cancer through identifying concentrations of biological samples.

Scientists from Tel Aviv University has developed 3,000 times brighter and water-resistant chemiluminescent -- the chemical light behind the glow sticks, probe in order to diagnose cancer and other medical diagnoses. In an article published by Phys.org, this development could lead to an invention of a single-component system with multiple applications like detecting and measuring cellular activity that could point out certain pathologies.

The study was published in ACS Central Science titled "Opening a Gateway for Chemiluminescence Cell Imaging: Distinctive Methodology for Design of Bright Chemiluminescent Dioxetane Probes," also discuss the importance the element behind glow sticks. Doron Shabat, the senior author of the study, said that Chemiluminescence is one of the most sensitive methods that is used in diagnostic testing.

"We have developed a method to prepare highly efficient compounds that emit light upon contact with a specific protein or chemical," he said. He also said that these compounds inside the glow sticks could be used as molecular probes for detecting cancer cells.

The research also fixed a glitch with the current chemiluminescent probes inside glow sticks that would hinder its use of detecting cancer cells. Dr. Christoph Bauer of Geneva University has collaborated in this research.

"As synthetic chemists, we knew how to link structure and function," Shabat said. He added that by adding two key atoms in the probe that could detect cancer cells, they could create a much brighter probe than the ones in the market, which mostly glows sticks used for recreational use.

In most chemiluminescent probes, which is the targeted in glow sticks, they use a mixture of one emitter molecule that could detect the species of interest and another two additional ingredients. These ingredients are fluorophore and surfactant.

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