Cell adhesion mediated by selectins (expressed by activated endothelium, activated platelets, and leukocytes) binding to their resepective selectin ligands (expressed by cancer cells) may be involved in metastasis. Therefore, methods of characterizing selectin ligands expressed on human tissue may serve as valuable assays. Presented herein is an innovative method for detecting functional selectin ligands expressed on human tissue that uses a dynamic approach, which allows for control over the force applied to the bonds between the probe and target molecules. This new method of tissue interrogation, known as dynamic biochemical tissue analysis (DBTA), involves the perfusion of molecular probe-coated microspheres over tissues. DBTA using selectin-coated probes is able to detect functional selectin ligands expressed on tissue from multiple cancer types at both primary and metastatic sites.
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