Microfluidic Affinity Targeting of Infiltrating Cells (MATIC) is a promising new technique being studied now at Northwestern University. Researchers cultivate the “Goldilocks population” of tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes, the body’s natural immune cells. These cells are extracted from tissue and cultivated in labs where the strongest of the cells multiply and can be sorted and re-injected into the body. The results are promising. Tumors shrank dramatically, and even disappeared in many cases.
The microfluidic device used in the research project can be 3D printed, making it feasible to be used in a hospital setting. The team recovered 400% more of the tumor-eating cells using this approach than current methods.