New Imaging Technique Can Distinguish Between Benign and Malignant Prostate Tissue

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The technique pairs laser optics with ultrasound imaging to create multispectral photoacoustic imaging that in a study of 42 prostatectomy specimens correctly predicted 25 out of 26 benign tissues correctly and 13 out of 16 malignant tissues correctly.

Researchers at the University of Rochester led by Vikram Dogra, M.D., observed increases and decreases in lipids, water, oxyhemoglobin and deoxyhemoglobin in the 42 tissue specimens and found that even a slight increase in deoxyhemoglobin increased the odds that the specimen was malignant so significantly that it could serve as a reliable predictor for whether a prostate growth would pose a risk to the patient.

Currently, transrectal ultrasound is the imaging technique used to diagnose prostate cancer, but it is invasive and most men dislike it, Dr. Dogra noted in a press release. “There is a need for a new imaging technique,” he said. “We expect this technique to be clinically available in about five years,” he added.

The findings were presented at the ARRS meeting in Washington, D.C.