Profile: IsoPlexis Analyzes Thousands of Cells to Fight Cancer


Software and microelectronics fabrication techniques let research identify powerful immune cells


3 min read
Photo showing the IsoPlexis chip.
Photo: IsoPlexis

Cancer patients' bodies contain immune cells that, through successful immunotherapy, can deliver proteins to destroy tumors. But it had been difficult in the past to identify which immune cells were the most powerful.

Now, IsoPlexis, a life sciences startup based in Connecticut, has created “microchips" that quickly identify 42 proteins emitted from thousands of individual cells. Software then analyzes the results to determine which cells are the highly potent “Superman" cells that are the most effective in immunotherapy.

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3D-Stacked CMOS Takes Moore’s Law to New Heights

When transistors can’t get any smaller, the only direction is up

10 min read
An image of stacked squares with yellow flat bars through them.
Emily Cooper
Green

Perhaps the most far-reaching technological achievement over the last 50 years has been the steady march toward ever smaller transistors, fitting them more tightly together, and reducing their power consumption. And yet, ever since the two of us started our careers at Intel more than 20 years ago, we’ve been hearing the alarms that the descent into the infinitesimal was about to end. Yet year after year, brilliant new innovations continue to propel the semiconductor industry further.

Along this journey, we engineers had to change the transistor’s architecture as we continued to scale down area and power consumption while boosting performance. The “planar” transistor designs that took us through the last half of the 20th century gave way to 3D fin-shaped devices by the first half of the 2010s. Now, these too have an end date in sight, with a new gate-all-around (GAA) structure rolling into production soon. But we have to look even further ahead because our ability to scale down even this new transistor architecture, which we call RibbonFET, has its limits.

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