VisualSonics launches molecular imaging tools at cancer research meeting

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VisualSonics, a developer of high-resolution, ultrasound-based, in vivo micro-imaging systems, is debuting targeted molecular imaging capabilities for its Vevo 770T system at the American Association for Cancer Research Conference that starts tomorrow in Washington, D.C. The tools are aimed at making the system more powerful and quantitative for cancer researchers.

This new functionality builds on the company's recent launch of molecular imaging capabilities for cardiovascular researchers. VisualSonics’ platform for in vivo imaging provides anatomical, functional and molecular data in vivo and in real-time for cancer researchers. An initial molecular application involves the measurement of relative expression of angiogenesis using VEGFR-2 as a biomarker. 

Research is currently being done using the VisualSonics instrumentation and the effect of different antiangiogenic and vascular disrupting therapies on tumor growth using the VisualSonics' instrumentation; several related presentations to the research will be given at the AACR. 

"Micro-ultrasound allows us to longitudinally study and quantify tumor growth and blood flow on the same subject over time,” said Robert Kerbel, PhD, head of the research involving VisualSonics technology, senior scientist and Canada Research Chair in Molecular Medicine at Sunnybrook & Women's College Health Sciences Centre, and professor, Department of Medical Biophysics, University of Toronto. “It also provides a better global visualization of the entire tumor's vascular function – an advantage no other modality can provide so quickly and easily." 

In terms of VisualSonics' new molecular imaging capabilities for oncology research, Kerbel added, "The ability to do anatomical, functional and now molecular imaging analysis – all in vivo and in real-time – is a significant step in terms of creating new tools for cancer researchers and for pharma companies studying therapeutic efficacy pre-clinically."

Kerbel's team is involved in four presentations at AACR highlighting research he has conducted.