Nanomechanical sandwich assay for multiple cancer biomarkers in breast cancer cell-derived exosomes

Nanoscale. 2016 Aug 18;8(33):15137-41. doi: 10.1039/c6nr03478k.


The use of exosomes as cancer diagnostic biomarkers is technically limited by their size, heterogeneity and the need for extensive purification and labelling. We report the use of cantilever arrays for simultaneous detection of multiple exosomal surface-antigens with high sensitivity and selectivity. Exosomes from breast cancer were selectively identified by detecting over-expressed membrane-proteins CD24, CD63, and EGFR. Excellent selectivity however, was achieved when targeting the cell-surface proteoglycan, Glypican-1 at extraordinary limits (∼200 exosomes per mL, ∼0.1 pg mL(-1)).

MeSH terms

  • Biomarkers, Tumor / analysis*
  • Breast Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • CD24 Antigen / metabolism*
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • ErbB Receptors / metabolism*
  • Exosomes / chemistry*
  • Humans
  • Nanoparticles
  • Tetraspanin 30 / metabolism*


  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • CD24 Antigen
  • CD63 protein, human
  • Tetraspanin 30
  • EGFR protein, human
  • ErbB Receptors