Breast cancer diagnosis

In the field of bio-sensing, early cancer diagnosis remains a challenging research field as late diagnostics often worsens the ultimate prognosis.

Among cancers, breast cancer is the most common invasive cancers among women and the first cause of cancer-related death. In developed countries, incidence is also higher due to modern lifestyle and increasing life expectancy.

On this basis, in the frame of MicroBioMed project, breast cancer early diagnosis has been chosen as target application for the developed lab-on-a-chip device.

State of the art for screening, diagnosis and treatment

Currently well-established techniques allow screening, diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer.



Imaging studies: mammography, ultrasonography, MRI

Mammography is the most used technique because of its high screening rate and moderate price but it relies on radiation and sometimes lead to false-positive or overdiagnostics and discomfort with the patient


Tissue / cells biopsy, an invasive technique which allows staging and treatment selection


Next to commonly used radiotherapy and chemotherapy, there is now a new trend towards personalized medicine with companion diagnostics


Current research on biomarkers

Identification of accurate biomarkers is a major challenge to improve

  • screening: early detection and identification of cancer subclasses,
  • diagnosis: staging enhancement, refined prognosis and better therapeutic response prediction,
  • treatment: companion diagnostic tool for personalized medicine.

For a few years, the analysis of the proteome has been used to study human cancers and therefore identify overexpressed proteins linked to the cancer type.

Currently, existing biomarkers have to be validated and new biomarkers have to be found to provide an exhaustive and reliable tool for breast cancer early diagnosis.


  • Identification of selective biomarkers for all breast cancer subclasses
  • Early diagnosis
  • Prediction of therapeutic response