Rutgers University and the UCLA gathered a team of scientists who created a device that measures the strengths of the cells. This tool may help scientists identify new treatments for the conditions linked to abnormal cells strength levels, such as muscular dystrophy, asthma, and hypertension.
Dr. Reynold A. Panettieri Jr., a professor at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School and the study’s co-author, declared that he and his colleagues were able to create a platform that’s capable of analyzing millions of molecules in order to find the most suitable ones for development of treatments or even cures for the most common chronic diseases, including asthma and hypertension.
How does the device work?
The device created by the team of scientists can measure how much strength a cell can exert over time and how it is responding to various substances.
The device was named FLECS (Fluorescently Labeled Elastomeric Contractible Surfaces) and it is made of 100,000 of proteins micropatterns shaped as the X letter on which the cells can attach themselves.
The proteins micropatterns are elastic and they shrink when the cells are attaching to them. Then, a molecular marker is used to make the micropatterns fluorescent in order to record how much did they shrink, so, revealing the cells strength.
Why is the cell strength analysis so important?
Scientists have already observed during other studies that the cells use their strength in essential activities and that any loss of control in their abilities to calculate how much strength is used can lead to diseases. Moreover, cell strength weakness is commonly linked to migraines, muscular dystrophy, and even heart failure.
What did the research reveal?
Scientists revealed that the cells retrieved from people who have suffered from asthma contract with more strength during an asthma attack in comparison with the cells of healthy people.
Scientists concluded that this device will most probably be really helpful in the development of new and better drugs for hypertension and asthma.