MIAMI BEACH, Fla., Apirl 20 -- Photonic technology has the potential to dramatically improve the prevention, detection and therapy of epithelial cancers, according to presenters at The Biomedical Optics meeting, or Biomed 2004, held last week in Miami Beach.
Biomed's sponsor, the Optical Society of America (OSA), said presenters also discussed a new class of molecular-specific contrast agents for vital reflectance imaging based on gold nanoparticles that will address limitations of the current diagnostic optical modalities to image molecular biomarkers associated with cancer.
"Among their many interesting properties, metal nanoparticles display very strong light-scattering behavior that renders them many times brighter than fluorescent dyes," OSA said in a statement. "The light-scattering intensity from nanoparticles does not degrade over time, unlike signals from fluorescent molecules. Metal nanoparticles can be easily conjugated to probe molecules such as antibodies in a single step, without the need for complex chemistries."
Also discussed at Biomed was a new, noninvasive technology called laser-induced photo-acoustic tomography (PAT), which will allow scientists to look at the brain in action and an optical instrument that enables simultaneous measurement of blood flow, blood oxygen saturation and total hemoglobin concentration.
OSA said Biomed 2004 registration was up by at least 100 and there was a 50 percent increase in poster submission over 2002, when the meeting was last held.
For more information, visit: www.osa.org