Researchers at Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston helped develop a combined optical/x-ray imaging system capable of obtaining both structural and functional information of the breast.
The two technologies used were digital breast tomosynthesis (DBT), a three-dimensional application of digital mammography, and diffuse optical tomography (DOT), which measures levels of hemoglobin concentration, oxygen saturation and other cellular characteristics, based on how light from a near-infrared laser is absorbed and scattered within tissue.
"By co-registering optical and x-ray data, radiologists are able to map suspicious findings and analyze the functional characteristics of those areas," said lead researcher Qianqian Fang, Ph.D., a radiology instructor at Harvard Medical School.
In the study, combined DBT and DOT was performed on 189 breasts from 125 women with an average age of 56 years. To perform the procedure, an optical source and detector probes were attached to a DBT unit and, with the breast compressed, optical data was acquired. The optical probes were then removed without altering the breast compression and a DBT scan was performed.
"We are very excited about adding optical imaging to DBT, because it is low-cost, safe, noninvasive and fast," Dr. Fang said.
Of the 189 imaging studies, 138 were negative, and 51 showed evidence of lesions. As determined by breast biopsy, 26 lesions of the 51 lesions were malignant, and 25 were benign.
In the 26 malignant tumors, total hemoglobin concentration (HbT) was significantly greater than in the normal glandular tissue of the same breast. Solid benign lesions and cysts had significantly lower HbT contrast compared to the malignant lesions.
"By providing additional differentiation of malignant and benign lesions, combined optical and x-ray imaging could potentially reduce unnecessary biopsies," Dr. Fang said.
In the study, oxygen saturation levels were significantly lower in cysts compared to those in malignant and solid benign lesions and glandular breast tissue.
"Although cysts are easy to diagnose using ultrasound, distinguishing cysts from malignant or benign lesions during a mammogram would save women the anxiety and costs associated with a second procedure," Dr. Fang said. "We are hopeful that this combined system may help improve the efficiency and diagnostic accuracy of breast screening."
The study is part of an ongoing research effort to improve breast cancer diagnosis led by Daniel B. Kopans, M.D., and David Boas, Ph.D., and funded by the National Institutes of Health.
"Combined Optical and X-ray Tomosynthesis Breast Imaging." Collaborating with Dr. Fang were Juliette Selb, Ph.D., Stefan A. Carp, Ph.D., Greg Boverman, Ph.D., Eric L. Miller, Ph.D., Dana H. Brooks, Ph.D., Richard H. Moore, B.S., Daniel B. Kopans, M.D., and David A. Boas, Ph.D.
Radiology is edited by Herbert Y. Kressel, M.D., Harvard Medical School, Boston, Mass., and owned and published by the Radiological Society of North America, Inc. (http://radiology.rsna.org/)
RSNA is an association of more than 46,000 radiologists, radiation oncologists, medical physicists and related scientists committed to excellence in patient care through education and research. The Society is based in Oak Brook, Ill. (RSNA.org)
For patient-friendly information on breast imaging, visit RadiologyInfo.org.
Linda Brooks | EurekAlert!
Visualizing gene expression with MRI
23.12.2016 | California Institute of Technology
Illuminating cancer: Researchers invent a pH threshold sensor to improve cancer surgery
21.12.2016 | UT Southwestern Medical Center
Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...
Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.
While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...
Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales
Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...
Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.
As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...
At TU Wien, an alternative for resource intensive formwork for the construction of concrete domes was developed. It is now used in a test dome for the Austrian Federal Railways Infrastructure (ÖBB Infrastruktur).
Concrete shells are efficient structures, but not very resource efficient. The formwork for the construction of concrete domes alone requires a high amount of...
10.01.2017 | Event News
09.01.2017 | Event News
05.01.2017 | Event News
18.01.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering
18.01.2017 | Materials Sciences
18.01.2017 | Life Sciences