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IBM, Swiss Hospital Collaborate on Cancer Diagnostic Test

IBM (NYSE: IBM) scientists are collaborating with pathologists at the University Hospital Zurich to test a new prototype tool to accurately diagnose different types of cancer. This work is based on a technology developed by IBM scientists called a microfluidic probe, which slightly resembles the nib of a fountain pen.

A critical step in the diagnosis of cancer is the analysis of a patient's biopsy tissue sample, which sometimes can be as small as a pinhead. Even with such a small sample, pathologists can test for the absence or presence of tumor cells and provide important information pertaining to the course of treatment to doctors.

To analyze samples, pathologists typically stain the tissue sample with liquid reagents. The intensity and distribution of the color stain classify and determine the extent of the disease. While this approach provides insights into the tumor,

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