Navigation Links
High-tech 'whole body' scan could improve treatment of bone marrow cancer

The new type of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan could improve care for a type of cancer called myeloma and reduce reliance on bone marrow biopsies, which can be painful for patients and often fail to show doctors how far the disease has spread.

The research is published today (Tuesday) in the journal Radiology and was carried out by researchers at The Institute of Cancer Research, London, and The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust.

It received funding from Cancer Research UK and the National Institute for Health Research Clinical Research Facility in Imaging, with additional funding from the EPSRC.

The new whole-body, diffusion-weighted MRI scans showed the spread of cancer throughout the bone marrow of patients with myeloma - one of the most common forms of blood cancer - more accurately than standard tests. The scans also showed whether the patients were responding to cancer treatments.

In the study 26 patients had whole-body, diffusion-weighted MRI scans before and after treatment. In 86% of cases, experienced doctors trained in imaging were able to correctly identify whether patients responded to treatment. The doctors also correctly identified those patients who weren't responding to treatment 80% of the time.

Using the scanning technique, doctors could pinpoint exactly where the cancer was in the bones, with the results available immediately. Conventional tests include bone marrow biopsies and blood tests but neither shows accurately where the cancer is present in the bones.

The researchers also assessed the visible changes on the MRI scans, using a measurement called the Apparent Diffusion Coefficient (ADC), which records how restricted water movement is within tissues. Changes in this measurement correctly identified treatment response for 24 of 25 myeloma patients.

The new scan was able to visualise cancer in almost all bones in the body, with only the skull remaining difficult to image partly because of the frequency of metal dental implants and fillings. The researchers also found the new methods were suitable for more patients than conventional tests; for example, seven patients had bone marrow biopsies but their samples were found to be inadequate for analysis. Performing another biopsy could be traumatic and painful, and may not provide any new information.

Professor Nandita deSouza, Professor of Translational Imaging at The Institute of Cancer Research and Honorary Consultant at The Royal Marsden, said: "This is the first time we've been able to obtain information from all the bones in the entire body for myeloma in one scan without having to rely on individual bone X-rays. It enables us to measure the involvement of individual bones and follow their response to treatment.

"The results can be visualised immediately; we can look on the screen and see straight away where the cancer is and measure how severe it is. The scan is better than blood tests, which don't tell us in which bones the cancer is located. It also reduces the need for uncomfortable biopsies, which don't reveal the extent or severity of the disease."

Dr Faith Davies, member of the Myeloma Targeted Treatment Team at The Institute of Cancer Research and Honorary Consultant at The Royal Marsden, said: "Myeloma can affect bones anywhere in the body, which is why this study is so important. We've shown that whole body MRI scans can accurately monitor how myeloma patients are responding to treatment, allowing doctors to make more informed decisions. With this new scan, if a treatment isn't working the patient can be moved onto new therapies that might be more effective much more quickly.

"This is a small study, so our next step will be to try out the technology in more patients and refine it. In the future we hope this new tool will help doctors extend the life of more myeloma patients. "

Julia Frater, Cancer Research UK's Senior Cancer Information Nurse, said: "Finding kinder ways to monitor how patients respond to treatment is really important, particularly in the case of myeloma where taking bone marrow samples can be painful. This research demonstrates how an advanced imaging technique could provide a whole-skeleton 'snapshot' to track the response of tumours in individual bones. Finding ways to make treatments gentler and improve the experience for patients is an important focus for Cancer Research UK and the research we fund."

Contact: Graham Shaw
Institute of Cancer Research

Related medicine news :

1. Botanisol™, A Glendale-Based High-Tech Firm Applies for $250,000 Grant to Create High-Paying Research Associate Jobs and Complete Pre-Clinical Development
2. Infection Prevention, High-tech Transport Boost St. Louis Children’s to #6 in the Nation
3. Given Brand Sports Now Offers a Full Line of High-Tech Running Watches and Gear Helping Athletes Set Their Race P.R.'s
4. Ambiance Expands Romantic Technology Leadership with New High-Tech Toy
5. High-tech cerebral palsy research at SDSU
6. As Doctors Go High-Tech, Staff Injuries May Rise
7. High-Tech CT Scan May Get People With Chest Pain Home Faster
8. Kudos for 3 NJIT Enterprise Development Center high-tech companies
9. Wholesale Microfiber Detailing Towels Now Available from Microfiber Tech
10. No Medical Exam Life Insurance Can Provide Coverage Before Christmas for the Whole Family
11. Announces The Best Online Store to Buy Wholesale Dresses and Electronics From China
Post Your Comments:
(Date:10/13/2015)... ... October 13, 2015 , ... ... have developed valuable new strategies for enrolling and serving insurance consumers who do ... obtain health insurance and pay monthly premiums. In “Health Plan Engagement Strategies: The ...
(Date:10/13/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... October 13, 2015 , ... ... smoke-free communities, and the Florida Apartment Association (FAA) has partnered with the Florida ... communities meet the demand. , The FAA Smoke-Free Multifamily Housing Program launched ...
(Date:10/13/2015)... ... 13, 2015 , ... Just under three months ago, eMarketing Concepts ... promotion – effectively offering all of their services for just a buck in the ... flooded with phone calls from interested buyers. As a genuine one-stop-shop for internet marketing, ...
(Date:10/13/2015)... ... October 13, 2015 , ... ... a new PDF automation tool to batch conversions of CAD drawings, plans, ... 100% document fidelity. , CADConverter eliminates the complexity requirement of specialized applications to ...
(Date:10/13/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... October 13, 2015 , ... The Bill ... in San Diego, also offering expert reconstruction and flood remediation services. Family-owned and operated ... They have been named the Best San Diego plumber two years in a row ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:10/12/2015)... Va. , Oct. 12, 2015  Today, Divurgent is ... of Advisory Services. As a former CIO, Paul brings 15 ... not just understand or sympathize with today,s CIOs, he is ... the same challenges Paul has faced, and his new role ... in ensuring technology efficiencies across an organization. ...
(Date:10/12/2015)... DENVER , Oct. 12, 2015 Beginning ... ICD-10 Codes. Therapy Partner, the fastest growing practice management ... automated technology that easily converts all patient diagnostic codes ... --> --> ... Brief for all mental health practitioners to easily understand ...
(Date:10/12/2015)... INDIANAPOLIS , Oct. 12, 2015 Eli ... ACCELERATE study,s academic leadership have accepted the recommendation of ... 3 trial of the investigational medicine evacetrapib, due to ... the treatment of high-risk atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease and will ... --> --> The independent data ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: