Imaging probe incorporates OCT to target skin cancer

Nov. 8, 2010
Researchers at King’s Health Partners Academic Health Sciences Centre and Michelson Diagnostics Ltd., the latter of which recently attracted a £1.7 million investment, are collaborating to target skin cancer with a new type of imaging probe.

Researchers at King’s Health Partners Academic Health Sciences Centre and Michelson Diagnostics Ltd., the latter of which recently attracted a £1.7 million investment, are collaborating to target skin cancer with a new type of imaging probe.

The project aims to develop and test a hybrid imaging probe that combines Michelson Diagnostics’ novel VivoSight Multi-Beam OCT probe with a visual camera. The optical coherence tomography (OCT) and visual images from the hybrid probe will be combined to provide enhanced diagnostic information to clinicians.

The £98,500 research project has received 75% funding through a National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Invention for Innovation ‘i4i’ grant awarded to the partners, Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, King’s College London and Michelson Diagnostics Ltd.

Project leader Dr. Andrew Coleman, consultant medical physicist at Guy’s and St Thomas’, explained the benefits of the hybrid probe: “When interpreting OCT images of sub-surface tissue, it really helps if you know exactly where on the lesion you are scanning, and the hybrid probe will enable this."

Michelson Diagnostics has delivered a VivoSight OCT skin scanner to Guy’s Hospital for the project, and the lesions of 93 patients have already been scanned and are being analyzed. The scanner will next be modified to incorporate the hybrid probe, and then more patients will be able to benefit from these enhanced scanning techniques.

“I am very excited about this project,” said Carole Letherby, a patient representative on the project team and someone living with skin cancer. “If successful, it will have a major impact for patients, with less need for painful biopsies, faster treatment decisions, and fewer repeat appointments for further surgery.”

Dr. Katie Lacy, consultant dermatologist at Guy’s and St Thomas’, will lead the clinical validation of the hybrid probe, while Dr. Raj Mallipeddi, consultant dermatological surgeon at Guy’s and St Thomas’, will head the surgical evaluation.

Source: Michelson Diagnostics

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Posted by Lee Mather

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