In collaboration with faculty and staff at the UNC School of Medicine, OptoSonics proposes to develop and validate a new clinical imaging platform for breast cancer screening in patient populations for whom X-ray mammography is less sensitive. This platform will allow clinicians to assess two distinct biomarkers of breast cancer - hemoglobin distribution and blood flow within suspicious masses - in women with dense breast, women <50 years of age, and those with a genetic or familial predisposition to breast cancer. Two new imaging technologies will be integrated into a single platform: 3D photoacoustic computed tomography (PAT) for imaging optical absorption;and, Dynamic, contrast-enhanced PAT (DCE-PAT) for quantifying blood flow and perfusion in suspicious masses. Both modalities will be co-registered spatially as they share conformal detector geometries. Our goal is to demonstrate 1.0 millimeter spatial resolution for imaging hemoglobin throughout the whole breast, compressed against the chest wall to <5 cm, and to quantify blood flow within suspicious masses with spatial resolution 0.5 mm. The clinical utility of this new imaging technology will be evaluated through several, clinical studies.
In collaboration with faculty and staff at the UNC School of Medicine, OptoSonics proposes to develop and validate a new clinical imaging platform for breast cancer screening in woman with dense breasts, women <50 years of age, or those with a genetic or familial predisposition to breast cancer. The platform will employ light (near infrared), rather than x rays, to detect and characterize breast cancer. If we are successful, breast cancer detection rates will increase in this patient population for whom X-ray mammography performs poorly.