NCCC funds pilot on fluorescence-guided surgery in ovarian cancer

Senior leaders at the Norris Cotton Cancer Center (NCCC) committed funding for a surgical research initiative by Thayer PI Jonathan T. Elliott, PhD with Professor Keith Paulsen, PhD, and clinical partner Evelyn Fleming, MD.  The proposal is titled, “Activation of Clinical Trial Investigating the Use of ABY-029 Fluorescence Guided Surgery in Ovarian Cancer” and is a strong translational initiative to address an important clinical problem in ovarian cancer – identifying patients whose ovarian cancer is not widespread and are thus good candidates for surgery.

The new project will build on two on-going clinical studies using ABY-029 (a Dartmouth-developed EGFR-targeted fluorophore) to examine  whether this molecule can be used to discriminate between normal and cancerous tissue during brain glioma and sarcoma fluorescence-guided resection.

Samkoe molecular imaging paper featured at WMIC Highlight Seminar

Kimberley Samkoe, PhD, was honored to have her conference abstract chosen for presentation at the Highlight Lecture that kicked off the September 2017 World Molecular Imaging Congress (WMIC) in Philadelphia.

The paper was entitled, “Quantitative molecular imaging of intracellular signaling in an in ovo avatar model of pancreatic cancer for predicting personalized response to molecular therapies within one week of laparoscopic biopsy.”  Dr. Samkoe presented the clinical and laboratory research and findings of the study she led with colleagues from the Illinois Institute for Technology and the Oregon Health and Science University.  

In the study, human tumor lines were used to produce in ovo avatars and to develop and validate a rapid, in vivo assay that predicts therapy efficacy outcomes through changes in intracellular signaling proteins for individual patients.  Dr. Samkoe and her research partners believe this model will be substantially faster and more cost effective than traditional patient-derived xenograft mouse models.



Pogue named JBO Editor

Brian Pogue, Professor of Engineering at the Thayer School of Engineering at Dartmouth, has been named Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Biomedical Optics (JBO).

JBO is issued by SPIE (the international society for optics and photonics) and publishes peer-reviewed papers on the use of modern optical technology for improved healthcare and biomedical research.

Brian will begin his term in 2018 and aims to highlight advances at the intersection of emerging optical/photonic technologies and biomedical needs.  Recognized as an expert in Optical Imaging, Brian is a fellow of both the Optical Society of America as well as the American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering.

Pogue has been conference chair of the Molecular Guided Surgery: Molecules, Devices, and Applications conference at SPIE BiOS since 2015, and has been a JBO editorial board member since 2007.

Bruza wins AAPM Imaging Best in Physics Award


Dartmouth Research Scientist Petr Bruza, PhD, was awarded ‘Best in Physics’ for his work in Imaging Physics, presented at the AAPM Annual Meeting in Denver, CO, on July 30, 2017.

Petr’s ePoster, titled “3D Cherenkov Sheet Molecular Imaging provides 100 micron whole body spatial resolution,” reported on his work to test the spatial and temporal imaging resolution limits for 3D fluorescence intensity and lifetime kinetics in whole bodies of small animals, using thin MV linac photon sheets to induce Cherenkov excitation light.

AAPM’s “Best in Physics” presentations are the 15 studies that score highest in the abstract review process.  Five studies in each of three categories – imaging, therapy and joint imaging-therapy – are then judged by scientific program directors to reflect the highest levels of scientific quality and innovation.  Founded in 1958, AAPM seeks to identify and implement improvements in patient safety for the medical use of radiation in imaging and radiation therapy.


Pogue awarded $2 million for CELSI by NIBIB

The best information on cancer tumor metabolism and immunology can be derived by analyzing tumors at a molecular level.  While current imaging technology provides wonderful data on structural features (bones and organs), it does not yield detailed, high resolution images of the molecular features of a tumor because of their location deep beneath the skin

Following the invention at Dartmouth of a novel high-resolution, deep-tissue, imaging application, National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB) funding will be used by Principal Investigator Brian Pogue to further develop whole body scanning of concentrations in the sub-microMolar range. The new approach uses thin sheets of MegaVolt x-ray from a linear accelerator (LINAC), shaped by a multileaf collimator, to induce Cherenkov excitation of luminescence for scanned imaging (CELSI).  Ultimately, a commercial prototype will be created.