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New tool to help brain surgeons 1 step closer to operating room
Date:1/10/2013

giomas, which combined account for about 65 percent of all brain tumors," said Eberlin, who is now a postdoctoral researcher at Stanford University. "The molecular information that is obtained from this kind of imaging technology allows for an analysis that is much more detailed than what other techniques can offer. We hope that it can one day help the thousands of people affected by brain cancer every year."

The classification results for brain tumor type in the validation studies of banked tissue agreed with standard pathology methods 100 percent of the time. The researchers found that the results of the mass spectrometry analysis of samples taken from the patients during surgery agreed with pathology with very few exceptions, despite the complexity and heterogeneity of the surgical samples. The composition of samples taken from different regions of an individual tumor can differ and tumor cell concentrations are especially variable, Eberlin said.

The team plans to continue to add to and improve the classification software and to develop a miniature mass spectrometer that could be used during surgery, Cooks said. The team also will continue to examine the molecular patterns of cancerous tissue.

"Ambient ionization mass spectrometry allows us to look directly at unmanipulated tissue, just as a surgeon does, and get simple but extremely valuable molecular information," Cooks said. "These molecules have a story to tell not just in terms of aiding diagnosis, but also perhaps in terms of prognosis and our understanding of this devastating disease."

Brigham and Women's Hospital has set up a mass spectrometer in the AMIGO suite and plans to begin testing the methodology for the detection of brain and breast cancer margins during surgery, Agar said.


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Contact: Elizabeth K. Gardner
ekgardner@purdue.edu
765-494-2081
Purdue University
Source:Eurekalert  

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