Saudis and Germans discover ways to measure biomarkers using innovative techniques

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RIYADH — A number of researchers in the field of laser physics, at the Attosecond Sciences Laboratory of the College of Science, in King Saud University, have designed a joint research project named: (Lasers4Life – L4L).

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This project aims at establishing a new method for measuring biomarkers using innovative femtosecond laser techniques, in cooperation with Ludwig Maximilian University and Max-Planck-Institute for Quantum Optics, in Germany.

In a statement made to the Saudi Press Agency (SPA), Dr. Abdullah Bin Mohammad Al-Zeer, a member of the research team of the project, said that the Lasers4Life (L4L) project would enable influencing the future of the methods for detecting cancer and other diseases.

Lasers4Life (L4L) is a collaborative venture involving laser physicists, mathematicians, medical specialists and molecular biologists whose goal is to develop a method based on the unique properties of ultrashort laser pulses that will enable doctors to diagnose cancers at the earliest possible stage.

At present, many types of cancer can be definitively diagnosed only by the painstaking examination of tissue samples (biopsies), which may have to be obtained repeatedly. A test that reveals the molecular fingerprint, which cancer cells imprint on the chemical composition of the blood would avoid the need for such invasive measures.

Dr. Al-Zeer, told SPA,: “The Laser for Life (L4L) project will enable, God willing, to influence the future of the method of detecting cancer and other diseases and discovering new indicators. An expanded clinical trial to test this technology in many medical centers in the Kingdom and around the world is to be held.”

Dr. Al-Zeer explained that the laser project aims to investigate the feasibility of advanced high-speed laser technologies along with spectroscopy in creating new effective methods to identify cancer, identify and monitor tumors in sensitive and effective ways early, with the use of artificial intelligence statistics (in cooperation with King Abdullah University of Science and Technology).

He indicated that the idea of the project began in 2013 between a team of physicists and the Oncology Center at King Saud University and the Max Planck Institute for Quantum Optics in Germany to find out the possibility of applying attosecond laser (i.e. a billionth of a billionth of a second) for early detection of cancerous tumors and that if cancer is discovered at an early date it could control it, so a new method was found by drawing blood from the patient and following the movement of particles inside the blood and knowing whether the patient is likely to be affected by cancer or not affected by it.

He pointed out that the research program for the molecular fingerprint in cancer to prove the correctness of the principle using the quantitative optics technique applied to the detection of breast cancer using the principle of the molecular positions of many variables in tumors, its preliminary results were published in Nature magazine in its January 2020 issue, in addition to The principle was presented at the European Society of Medical Oncology (ESMO) conference held in Barcelona, and published in the Journal Annals of Oncology.

— SPA

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