OHSU scientists develop MRI approach to improve breast cancer detection
Continued studies may result in newer, more effective breast cancer detection methods
Researchers at Oregon Health & Science Universitys Advanced Imaging Research Center (AIRC) are developing a new imaging method that may provide a clearer diagnosis of breast cancer. The research is published in the latest issue of the journal Magnetic Resonance in Medicine. AIRC Director Charles Springer, Ph.D., is senior author, and AIRC Manager, Xin Li, Ph.D., is first author of the new paper, along with William Rooney, Ph.D., AIRC faculty. Professor Springer also holds appointments in OHSUs Cancer Institute and Department of Biomedical Engineering.
"This technique involves a new method for interpreting information gathered through MRI," explained Springer. "The technique involves recognizing that certain properties of MRI signals can change during the examination, much like the changing of a cameras shutter speed. On a camera, a fast shutter speed can make a speeding car look as if it is standing still. A slower shutter speed may result in a photo showing the car blurring past the camera. This principle, when correctly applied to MRI imaging, can provide more accurate information. In the case of MRI, the blurring is not of the actual image, but of the time courses of the MRI signals."
Magnetic resonance imaging technology combines the use of powerful magnets and radio wave pulses. The magnet influences the magnetization of the bodys water molecules. The radio signals that are received from this can be converted into a visual representation.
The shutter speed concept allows researchers to adjust the mathematics of the computer program analyzing the signals to account for the movement of water molecules in and out of cellular compartments in diseased and healthy tissue. When the MR shutter speed increases, this movement appears to slow. In the case of tumors, using shutter speed analysis not only more clearly indicates the locations of tumors, it also allows researchers to distinguish between malignant tumors and benign tumors.
To conduct this research project, the scientists analyzed data from six patients identified as having breast tumors with mammograms (X-rays.) In procedures conducted by New York research collaborators Drs. Wei Huang, Alina Tudorica, and Thomas Yankeelov of Stony Brook University and Brookhaven National Laboratory, the patients were injected with a contrast agent, which acts like an MRI dye and provides clearer images. The patients received MRI scans as the dye passed through the tumors. The time courses of the MRI signals were analyzed with the shutter speed model. The results showed hot spots only in images of malignant tumors but not in the benign tumors (three of the cases). This complete distinction was not the case using the standard MRI technique, and there was no distinction using mammography. Pathology results on these tumors confirmed the accuracy of the new MRI testing.
"While continued research is required, we believe shutter speed analyzed MRI could become a powerful tool for the diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer and almost any other form of cancer, as well as many other pathologies," explained Springer. "The shutter speed is a very general concept and applies to a great many different MRI techniques."
"We are fortunate to have recruited Dr. Springer and his team to lead the imaging research activities at OHSU and the OHSU Cancer Institute." said Grover C. Bagby Jr., M.D., Director of the OHSU Cancer Institute. "His shutter-speed model has the potential of changing our approach to cancer screening in general and may also play a role in determining the early effects of treatment. The findings also provide a unique opportunity for cancer researchers to unravel the basic molecular causes of the different image signatures."
Jim Newman | EurekAlert!
The most recent press releases about innovation >>>
Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:
An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.
Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...
Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.
Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...
Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.
As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...
Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.
With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...
Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine
Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...