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Researchers at the Optical Imaging Laboratory
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Researchers at the Optical Imaging Laboratory

May 7, 2010
Researchers at the Optical Imaging Laboratory, part of the biomedical engineering program in Texas A&M University's industrial engineering department, work on developing a noninvasive early detection procedure for cancerous tissue.

The new technique is called ultrasound-modulated laser tomography and produces a 3-D image similar to a CAT scan. It can locate tumors buried up to four inches under the skin's surface. Cancerous tissue deflects and absorbs light differently from normal tissue. This light scattering makes it difficult to optically image tissue. To overcome the problem, researchers at the lab combined ultrasound with low-powered lasers.

Current research at the lab involves measuring changes in the optical properties of simulated tissue samples. The researchers hope to apply these results to real-world problems in diagnosis and monitoring, beginning with breast cancer detection.

[This research was supported by a grant from the National Science Foundation's Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) program, grant BES 97-34491.] (Year of image: 1998)