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Scanning innovation can improve personalized medicine
Date:11/26/2012

New combinations of medical imaging technologies hold promise for improved early disease screening, cancer staging, therapeutic assessment, and other aspects of personalized medicine, according to Ge Wang, director of Virginia Tech's Center for Biomedical Imaging, in a recent paper that appeared in the refereed journal PLOS ONE.

The integration of multiple major tomographic scanners into a single framework "is a new way of thinking in the biomedical imaging world" and is evolving into a "grand fusion" of many imaging modalities known as "omni-tomography," explained Wang, the lead author of the article.

Wang has a history of "firsts" in the imaging world, including the first paper on spiral multi-slice/cone-beam CT in 1991, on bioluminescence tomography in 2004, and on interior tomography in 2007.

"The holy grail of biomedical imaging is an integrated system capable of producing tomographic, simultaneous, dynamic observations of highly complex biological phenomena in vivo," Wang said.

Currently, dual-modality imaging such as a positron emission tomography and magnetic resonance imaging (PET/MRI) is "a powerful example of the synergy provided" by using the two as a hybrid technology when assessing concerns in oncology and cardiology, Wang said. "There are no longer any lone PET scanners. Today all are coupled with computed tomography (CT) scanners," added Wang.

For the past decade, Wang and his colleagues have investigated approaches to fusing the various scanning techniques. Recently, they became interested in going beyond the dual-mode imaging, and found that the enabling technology for omni-tomography is "interior tomography" that allows for the integration of multipl
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Contact: Lynn Nystrom
tansy@vt.edu
540-231-4371
Virginia Tech
Source:Eurekalert  

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