MR-Guided Near Infrared Optical Spectroscopy for Structural and Functional In-Vivo Imaging of Breast Cancer

Michael Mastanduno, Ph.D. Candidate and Research-In-Progress Winner, Thayer School of Engineering

Friday, November 4, 2011, 3:30pm

Spanos Auditorium

This seminar is part of the Jones Seminars on Science, Technology, and Society series, and is the first half of a two-part seminar by research-in-progress winners. See part two.

The American Cancer Society recently released new guidelines recommending that high risk women obtain a breast contrast-MR scan each year because of MR’s high sensitivity to breast tumors. However, it is well known that breast contrast-MR yields a high number of false positives, and leads to expensive MR-guided biopsy procedures. There is a growing need for superior biomarkers derived from the lesion during the MR scan, so the high sensitivity can be matched by a high specificity. We use Near-Infrared Spectroscopy (NIRS) to augment MR information by providing information about blood content, blood oxygen saturation, water, fat, and scatter components. This functional information has been shown to provide information about tumor malignancy; however, optical imaging’s low spatial resolution has limited its usefulness. An instrument that combines MR with NIRS has been developed at Dartmouth to non-invasively image high-contrast intrinsic properties of malignant breast lesions. The current design is limited to only image a single plane of a breast at a time, compromising the ability to image complex breast tissues.

About the Speaker

Michael Mastanduno graduated with a BA in Physics from The Colorado College.  He joined the Optics in Medicine Lab at Dartmouth and is currently a Ph.D. candidate. Working under Dr. Brian Pogue, Mike's research focuses on developing alternative imaging modalities for detecting and characterization of breast cancer. His current focus is to optimize a combined near-infrared diffuse optical spectroscopy with conventional MR imaging. This imaging modality yields a high resolution volumetric data set characterizing both tissue structure and function at a molecular level. Mike works as a member of a research team involving Thayer School engineers and scientists and Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center radiologists, pathologists, and clinicians.