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Ultrasensitive SERS Nano-Sensors for Pancreatic Cancer Diagnosis and Prognosis

Award Information
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services
Branch: National Institutes of Health
Contract: 1R41CA213718-01
Agency Tracking Number: R41CA213718
Amount: $300,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: 103
Solicitation Number: PA15-270
Solicitation Year: 2015
Award Year: 2016
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2016-09-13
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2019-03-31
Small Business Information
Omaha, NE 68114-3708
United States
DUNS: 831984625
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 (402) 730-8954
Business Contact
Phone: (402) 730-8954
Research Institution

Pancreatic cancer PC is an extremely aggressive malignancy with one of the worst prognoses of all
cancers with a median survival of less than one year and an overall year survival of andlt With marked
resistance to chemo and radiotherapies surgery is the only curative option In patients with localized disease
and no lymph node or extra pancreatic metastases complete surgical resection provides a five year survival
rate of However andgt of patients diagnosed have unresectable primary tumor The major cause for
the late presentation is lack of early diagnostic biomarker s However the low levels of circulating markers
during the early stages drastically dampens the efficacy of many promising markers A rapid widely
distributable technology with highly sensitive and specific diagnostic ability to discriminate real disease
resectable neoplasms from confounding high risk groups including pancreatitis benign pathologies acute
biliary obstruction common bile duct stone cholecithiasis and non malignant benign cystic neoplasms serous
pancreatic cystic neoplasms could change the fate of PC patient Serum based assays are the most widely
used tests for the detection of tumor markers in clinical settings The ability to detect low levels of specific
cancer biomarkers in human serum provides an effective test for early diagnosis It has been demonstrated
that mucins specifically MUC are overexpressed in pancreatic cancer MUC has proven to be more
informative PC biomarker than current gold standard CA However most of the currently used diagnostic
test methodologies lack the sensitivity to detect MUC in human serum As a consequence there exists a
critical need to develop sensitive and effective platforms for detecting MUC It has been demonstrated that a
platform based on SERS readout strategy surpasses the analytical capabilities of conventional immunoassays
including both ELISA and RIA to detect mucins in human serum Furthermore we have recently showed that
SERS based nano immunoassay is capable of differentiating samples of control cases from those of
pancreatic cancer patients We propose to test the feasibility of implementation of the Surface Enhanced
Raman Scattering SERS based immunoassay detection platform into a robust portable point of care
methodology to be used for ultrasensitive quantitative and rapid detection of cancer biomarkers The proposed
research in phase I will focus on Aim improving sample preparation procedure by incorporating a
microfluidic lab on a chip module and automation protocols that will reduce the labor burden and decrease
sample size thus increasing the potential of the platform for high throughput sample screening The clinical
utility of the assay will be validated Aim by comparing the assay with the PC prognostic marker CA and
clinically testing the SERS based assay in high risk controls and pancreatic cancer patients samples Once
optimized and validated the SERS based immunoassay platform will be incorporated into a portable point of
care POC device which would be the subject of the immediate Phase II submission PROJECT NARRATIVE
Pancreatic Cancer PC is lethal malignancy lacking early diagnostic markers The presented project aims to
develop a Surface Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy based technology for the sensitive detection of circulating
MUC a highly potential marker It will lead towards the development of a highly specific sensitive tool for
early detection of malignancy

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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