For the first time, a 3D study has been performed on the release of acetaldehyde from cancerous and normal lung cells using SIFT-MS (selected ion flow tube mass spectrometry) by scientists in the UK and Czech Republic.
While similar studies have been performed before, they were all 2D; using 3D is closer to the real physiological cell growth system. The amount of acetaldehyde released in these 3D studies is more (than in the 2D kind) and could also be measured at lower concentrations. This is a step towards volatile biomarkers in exhaled breath being used as an indicator of tumours in vivo.
A V Rutter et al, Analyst, 2012, DOI: 10.1039/c2an36185j
Dr Josep Sulé-Suso (Keele University Research Institute for Science and Technology in Medicine/University Hospital of North Staffordshire, UK)