PillCam®COLON capsule endoscopy (CE), a non-invasive diagnostic tool of the digestive tract, has dramatically changed the diagnostic approach and has become an attractive alternative to the conventional colonoscopy for early detection of colorectal cancer. However, despite the significant progress and non-invasive detection capability, studies have shown that its sensitivity and specificity is lower than that of conventional colonoscopy. This work presents a new optical detection method, specifically tailored to colon cancer detection and based on the well-known optical properties of immune-conjugated gold nanorods (GNRs). We show, on a colon cancer model implanted in a chick chorioallantoic membrane (CAM), that this detection method enables conclusive differentiation between cancerous and normal tissues, where neither the distance between the light source and the intestinal wall, nor the background signal, affects the monitored signal. This optical method, which can easily be integrated in CE, is expected to reduce false positive and false negative results and improve identification of tumors and micro metastases.
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