Specific Cell Extraction

Generally, the extraction of diseased cells by magnetic particles is based on the chemical difference between healthy and infected cells. Two steps should be considered. The first involves targeting the microspheres to a specific site by applying a magnetic field. Magnetic guidance makes it possible to reach areas that are difficult to access, and its efficacy usually depends on the properties of the carrier, such as particle size and stability in the environment. Secondly, the infected cells are then recognized and immobilized on sensitized particles. Capture yield varies from patient to patient since recognition depends on the properties of tumor cells and their affinity vis-a-vis the antibodies immobilized on the colloidal particles. Hancok [36], Rembaum [59] and Ugelstad [60] initiated the use of magnetic particles to purify marrow. The method was then extended to other tumors such as the treatment of lymphocytes, leukemia and lung cancer. Using chemotherapy and radiation to cure cancerous tumors can affect neighboring healthy cells. To avoid this problem and reduce secondary effects, treatment is carried out outside the organism (ex vivo) [61]. Specific antigens of tumor cells are fixed on the surface of magnetic particles and make it possible to capture only infected cells [62]. These are then extracted by applying a magnetic field and treated chemically outside the organism (ex vivo) before being rein-jected into the patient. Another example of this type of promising application is the study of vascular problems by extracting endothelial cells via coating of magnetic particles with lectin.

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