Cell metastasis assays

Prof. Daphne Weihs | Biomedical Engineering


Medical Devices

The Technology

Cell invasiveness is a major step in tumor metastasis therefore its evaluation is critical for prognosis of cancer progression and will affect treatment protocols. Currently, metastasis prognosis is based on subjective clinical judgment, patient characteristics, disease statistics, tumor shape/size, lymph-node status, tumor histology, or genetic markers leading to low accuracy. The innovative, proprietary technology provides rapid, patient-specific, early prognosis of metastatic risk in a quantitative, potentially high-throughput method.

The assay is based on the fact that invasive cells rapidly push physiological-stiffness gels, indenting the gels to cell-size-scale depths within 1 hour from seeding; fluorescent marker-beads at the gel surface are pushed out of focus. In contrast, normal, benign, or noninvasive cells do not considerably indent the gels. Thus, the mechanical invasiveness of the cells in a sample can be evaluated.


  • Rapid-Approximately 2-4 hours vs 12-96 hours in other established laboratory assays
  • Simple- use of fluorescent microscope. No need for cell manipulations (e.g. serum starvation, staining, expansion)
  • Quantitative & reproducible
  • Versatile use -Suitable for various cell & cancer types, potential use of other gel materials and different coatings
  • Metastatic risk–enable rapidly and accurately prediction of clinical metastatic potential
  • Accurate gel stiffness–Soft-tissue scale

 Applications and Opportunities

  • Cell Invasion
  • Metatastic risk assessment
  • Chemotherapeutics drug efficacy screening (i.e. personalized medicine)
  • Optimize gel for prolonged stability under storage and reduce shipment costs
  • Automation of the data collection and analysis procedures
arrow Business Development Contacts
Dr. Gal Gur
Director of Business Development, Life Sciences