Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

New method for prostate cancer detection can save millions of men painful examination

07.04.2014

Technique developed at Eindhoven University of Technology shows tumors with much greater precision

Each year prostate tissue samples are taken from over a million men around the world – in most cases using 12 large biopsy needles – to check whether they have prostate cancer. This medical procedure, which was recently described by an American urology professor as 'barbaric'**, shows that 70% of the subjects do not have cancer.


This is a prostate image made with Contrast Ultrasound Dispersion Imaging and a photo of same prostate (after surgical removal) with cancerous area colored red.

Credit: Eindhoven University of Technology


This is a prostate image made with Contrast Ultrasound Dispersion Imaging and a photo of same prostate (after surgical removal) with cancerous area colored red.

Credit: Eindhoven University of Technology

The examination is unnecessarily painful and involves risk for these patients, and it is also costly to carry out. A patient-friendly examination, which drastically reduces the need for biopsies, and may even eliminate them altogether, has been developed at Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e), together with AMC Amsterdam. The results will be presented at the European Association of Urology Congress in Stockholm, on 14 April.

Hundreds of thousands of men die each year from prostate cancer. The standard procedure used worldwide for prostate cancer examinations starts with measurement of the PSA (prostate specific antigen) value in the blood.

... more about:
»AMC »PSA »biopsy »blood »procedure »prostate »urology

If this is high, physicians will usually remove samples of prostate tissue through the anus at six to sixteen points for pathological examination. However, 70% of the subjects show no signs of cancer. So does this mean the high PSA level is a false alarm? Not always: the biopsies may have been taken at just the wrong places. Cancer is later found in 30% of the patients with negative results (no cancer).

Among the positive results (patients with signs of cancer), doctors do not know the exact sizes of the tumor. In many cases, operations show that the tumors are so small that surgery was unnecessary. As well as that, the examination leads to inflammations in up to 5% of patients. Plus the fact that each examination costs around USD 2500 to carry out.

Recognizable blood vessel pattern in cancer

Research team leader Massimo Mischi at TU/e has developed a method to investigate whether and where men have prostate cancer using existing ultrasound scanners, together with the Academic Medical Center Amsterdam. These devices create images of organs in the body using sound waves, in the same way as prenatal ultrasound scans. But these systems are usually unable to show the difference between healthy and tumor tissue. To make this visible, Mischi used the fact that tumor tissue produces large numbers of small blood vessels to allow it to grow, with a characteristic pattern. Patients are given a single injection of a contrast medium containing tiny bubbles, which are shown by the ultrasound scanner right down to the smallest blood vessels. Using advanced image-analysis techniques that can recognize the characteristic blood vessel pattern in tumors, the computer then generates an image showing where the tumor is. The examination only takes one minute, and the results are available no more than a few minutes later. These examinations also save money, because costly biopsy analysis is no longer necessary.

Precise prediction

The researchers were able to compare the 'tumor images' from 24 patients at three hospitals in the Netherlands with the actual prostates after removal by operation. The images were found to give a good indication of the locations and sizes of the tumors. Massimo Mischi will present the results at the European Association of Urologists Congress in Stockholm on 14 April. It is exceptional for a scientist from a university of technology to be given the opportunity to speak at this congress of medical specialists.

Far fewer biopsies

The use of the new method, which has been patented by TU/e, can avoid the need for biopsies to be taken from millions of men around the world. The procedure will no longer be necessary for a large part of the 70% of men from whom biopsies are currently taken unnecessarily. And far fewer biopsies will need to be taken from the remaining 30% because the location of the tumor is already clear. Once the new method has been sufficiently proven in clinical practice, the need to do biopsies may even be eliminated almost entirely.

Quick and simple introduction

The research is being carried out together with the Academic Medical Center Amsterdam and two other Dutch hospitals. A major comparative study will be held in these hospitals next year between the old and new methods, to proof that the new method is better. This will involve the use of both methods on at least 250 men. If all goes well the method will also be made available from 2016 for other patients, a large part of which will then no longer have to undergo the old and painful form of examination. The new method can be introduced quite simply because no new equipment is required; the existing ultrasound scanners which the hospitals already have can continue to be used.

###

Massimo Mischi received a Vidi grant from the NWO (Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research) in 2009 for his research, and in 2011 he received a Starting Grant from the European Research Council. A 4-year grant for further research was provided by the Dutch Cancer Foundation (KWF Kankerbestrijding) in 2013 to the AMC and TU/e.

** Matthew Gettman, professor of urology at the Mayo Graduate School of Medicine in Rochester, MN, USA, wrote in 2012 in the journal European Urology that the method is "barbaric", despite the use of local anesthetic.

Note for editors (not for publication)

For more information please contact Massimo Mischi (m.mischi@tue.nl, +31 6 1326 9039).

In this video Mischi explains the project: http://vimeo.com/31837362

VIDEO: For video or tv-productions high quality footage of the current procedure (taking biopsies) and the new procedure is available. Please contact us if you want to use this footage.

Attached there is a picture of Massimo Mischi giving a lecture. You can use this picture if you mention the source: Bart van Overbeeke/Eindhoven University of Technology.

Also attached is a powerpoint document containing prostate images that were made with the new technology. The orange/red areas show where the tumor area is. Alongside there are pictures of the actual prostates in which the cancerous tissue is colored red.

Massimo Mischi | EurekAlert!

Further reports about: AMC PSA biopsy blood procedure prostate urology

More articles from Medical Engineering:

nachricht Imaging probe yields double insight
05.08.2015 | The Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR)

nachricht Tiny mechanical wrist gives new dexterity to needlescopic surgery
24.07.2015 | Vanderbilt University

All articles from Medical Engineering >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: OU astrophysicist and collaborators find supermassive black holes in quasar nearest Earth

A University of Oklahoma astrophysicist and his Chinese collaborator have found two supermassive black holes in Markarian 231, the nearest quasar to Earth, using observations from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope.

The discovery of two supermassive black holes--one larger one and a second, smaller one--are evidence of a binary black hole and suggests that supermassive...

Im Focus: What would a tsunami in the Mediterranean look like?

A team of European researchers have developed a model to simulate the impact of tsunamis generated by earthquakes and applied it to the Eastern Mediterranean. The results show how tsunami waves could hit and inundate coastal areas in southern Italy and Greece. The study is published today (27 August) in Ocean Science, an open access journal of the European Geosciences Union (EGU).

Though not as frequent as in the Pacific and Indian oceans, tsunamis also occur in the Mediterranean, mainly due to earthquakes generated when the African...

Im Focus: Self-healing landscape: landslides after earthquake

In mountainous regions earthquakes often cause strong landslides, which can be exacerbated by heavy rain. However, after an initial increase, the frequency of these mass wasting events, often enormous and dangerous, declines, in fact independently of meteorological events and aftershocks.

These new findings are presented by a German-Franco-Japanese team of geoscientists in the current issue of the journal Geology, under the lead of the GFZ...

Im Focus: FIC Proteins Send Bacteria Into Hibernation

Bacteria do not cease to amaze us with their survival strategies. A research team from the University of Basel's Biozentrum has now discovered how bacteria enter a sleep mode using a so-called FIC toxin. In the current issue of “Cell Reports”, the scientists describe the mechanism of action and also explain why their discovery provides new insights into the evolution of pathogens.

For many poisons there are antidotes which neutralize their toxic effect. Toxin-antitoxin systems in bacteria work in a similar manner: As long as a cell...

Im Focus: Fraunhofer IPA develops prototype of intelligent care cart

It comes when called, bringing care utensils with it and recording how they are used: Fraunhofer IPA is developing an intelligent care cart that provides care staff with physical and informational support in their day-to-day work. The scientists at Fraunhofer IPA have now completed a first prototype. In doing so, they are continuing in their efforts to improve working conditions in the care sector and are developing solutions designed to address the challenges of demographic change.

Technical assistance systems can improve the difficult working conditions in residential nursing homes and hospitals by helping the staff in their work and...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Networking conference in Heidelberg for outstanding mathematicians and computer scientists

20.08.2015 | Event News

Scientists meet in Münster for the world’s largest Chitin und Chitosan Conference

20.08.2015 | Event News

Large agribusiness management strategies

19.08.2015 | Event News

 
Latest News

Interstellar seeds could create oases of life

28.08.2015 | Physics and Astronomy

An ounce of prevention: Research advances on 'scourge' of transplant wards

28.08.2015 | Health and Medicine

Fish Oil-Diet Benefits May be Mediated by Gut Microbes

28.08.2015 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>