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E. A Microchip that May Accelerate the Process of Drug Discovery

Narrator: This is Science Today. There's a microchip being developed at the University of California, Berkeley that could accelerate the process of drug discovery. Mechanical engineer Yong Huang says traditionally scientists developing drugs use a test that can only tell if a toxin kills a cell, but with this new chip, scientists will be able to understand the dying process of a cell much more dynamically-and hopefully discover drugs faster.

Huang: The nice thing about our technology is that it tells you what happened with the cell membrane while cell is dying.

Narrator: This new wealth of information about the process of cell death should speed up drug discovery and toxin detection.

Huang:I believe that with this technology what we can do is study how the cells responded to different agents, drugs or toxins. And to build kind of like an information library which can also be used for drug discovery and also for toxic detection.

Narrator: For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.