New Artificial Nose Device Sniffs Out Cancer

Scientists in Finland have developed a device that helps neurosurgeons identify and extract cancerous tissue during surgery.

Sniffing for Cancer / Image: Tampere University
Sniffing for Cancer / Image: Tampere University

Electrosurgical resection is a neurosurgery technique in which a surgeon uses an electric knife to burn body tissue. The process releases tissue molecules into the air in the form of smoke. A recent article from Tampere University of Applied Sciences says researchers have developed a measuring system that analyzes the smoke and distinguishes healthy from malignant tissue.

The device contains an electric knife that produces flue gases from the tissue and uses a machine learning system to analyze it. In a recent study, the device detected malignant tissue with 83% accuracy. The device could one day lead to more precise excision of tumors to stop the spread of cancer and save healthy tissue.

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