The MATISSE project aims to combine several nanotechnology elements into a new, diagnostic tool of multiple areas in the same tumour, thereby facilitating a more informed selection of a treatment regime that is more likely to eradicate the entire tumour. This will be achieved by the development of a needle inserted into tumours for harvesting the molecular content from the tumour cells. Such approach may potentially eliminate the need for complex procedures to collect the tumour samples and to allow analysis of many areas in the same tumour.
Inside the needle, the molecular content will be harvested using a technique called electroporation. It is based on forming pores in the cell membranes by applying an electric field to subsequently release the molecular content. The molecular content is then extracted from the tissue using the needle and transferred to a centrifugal microfluidic device that separates the relevant biomolecules, namely proteins and RNA, from the rest of the sample. These biomolecules are then analysed promptly to provide the diagnosis. The centrifugal microfluidic device can analyse several samples in parallel and thereby speeds up the process of diagnosis. Based on the diagnosis, the surface of therapeutic nanoparticles will be tailored to bind specifically to biomolecules discovered in the analysis. Thereby, therapeutics may hopefully reach all parts of the tumour and significantly increase the chances of successful therapy.