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New high-tech glasses detect cancer cells during surgery
Date:3/10/2014

ensure no stray tumor cells are left behind during surgery.

Currently, surgeons are required to remove the tumor as well as neighboring tissue that may or may not include cancer cells. The samples are sent to a lab, and if cancer cells are found in neighboring tissue, a second surgery often is recommended to remove additional tissue.

"We're in the early stages of this technology, and more development and testing will be done, but we're certainly encouraged by the potential benefits to patients," said breast surgeon and WUSTL associate professor of surgery Julie Margenthaler, who performed the procedure in February, in a press release issued by WUSTL. "Imagine what it would mean if these glasses eliminated the need for follow-up surgery and the associated pain, inconvenience and anxiety."

The glasses could reduce the need for additional surgical procedures and continued stress on patients, as well as time and expenses. Margenthaler said about 20-25 percent of breast cancer patients who have lumps removed require a second surgery.

Achilefu worked with Washington University's Office of Technology Management and has a patent pending for the technology. He also is seeking FDA approval for a different molecular agent he's helping to develop for use with the glasses, which specifically targets and stays longer in cancer cells.


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Contact: Amy Nelson
amy@spie.org
360-685-5478
SPIE--International Society for Optics and Photonics
Source:Eurekalert

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