Search Menu
Photonics Media Photonics Buyers' Guide Photonics EDU Photonics Spectra BioPhotonics EuroPhotonics Industrial Photonics Photonics Showcase Photonics ProdSpec Photonics Handbook
More News
Email Facebook Twitter Google+ LinkedIn Comments

Tumor ‘paint’ reveals cancer boundaries

Aug 2007
When removing malignant tumors, it is important for surgeons to know that they have removed all the cancerous cells. This is especially important in the brain, where more than 80 percent of malignant cancers recur around the edges of the surgical site. However, this task is hard because surgeons rely on the appearance and feel of tissue during surgery, and today’s imaging tools, such as MRI, can distinguish tumors from healthy tissue only when more than 1 million cancer cells are present.


Researchers at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and at the University of Washington, both in Seattle, have developed a fluorescence-based technique that might one day help surgeons more precisely see whether they have removed all the cancerous cells. For this, they created a conjugate of the chlorotoxin peptide and the IR-emitting fluorophore CY5.5. The conjugate, which they call tumor paint, can identify tumors with as few as 2000 cancer cells.

The team, led by Dr. James M. Olson, demonstrated that, in mouse models, the technique could reveal brain tumors as small as 1 mm without causing surrounding normal brain tissue to fluoresce. The conjugate is advantageous because it activates within hours, it begins binding to cancer cells within minutes, and the signal from the cancer cells lasts 14 days. The work was published in the July 15, 2007 issue of Cancer Research.

The researchers are preparing toxicity studies before seeking approval from the FDA to begin clinical trials. If successful, the chlorotoxin:Cy5.5 conjugate could help surgeons not only remove all cancerous cells, but also avoid healthy tissue. The investigators think that the conjugate also might find use as a noninvasive screening tool for early detection of skin, cervical, esophageal, colon and lung cancers.

The emission of light or other electromagnetic radiation of longer wavelengths by a substance as a result of the absorption of some other radiation of shorter wavelengths, provided the emission continues only as long as the stimulus producing it is maintained. In other words, fluorescence is the luminescence that persists for less than about 10-8 s after excitation.
As We Go To PressBiophotonicsBreaking NewsfluorescenceIR-emitting fluorophoremalignant tumorsPresstime Bulletin

Terms & Conditions Privacy Policy About Us Contact Us
back to top
Facebook Twitter Instagram LinkedIn YouTube RSS
©2018 Photonics Media, 100 West St., Pittsfield, MA, 01201 USA,

Photonics Media, Laurin Publishing
x Subscribe to BioPhotonics magazine - FREE!
We use cookies to improve user experience and analyze our website traffic as stated in our Privacy Policy. By using this website, you agree to the use of cookies unless you have disabled them.