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Sussex tech spin-off will revolutionise cancer prognosis from medical images

TexRAD directors and contributors

TexRAD, a new tech spin-off from the University of Sussex (UK), will market a radical new software that can produce prognostic information from diagnostic body scan images of cancer patients.

The new company launched today (23rd February 2011) at its first board meeting with leading medical imaging companies: Imaging Equipment Ltd (IEL), Cambridge Computed Imaging (CCI) and Miles Medical (MM) as partners. 

Nick Stevens, managing director of IEL said: "With TexRAD, for the first time ever, we can derive 'textures' from routine diagnostic images and highlight anomalies not apparent to the human eye.  From these anomalies the software generates a risk stratification report and can even be used retrospectively on old scan data.  TexRAD can currently analyse CT images of colorectal, lung, renal, prostate and esophageal cancers as well as mammography for breast cancer."

TexRAD's creator, Dr Balaji Ganeshan, Research Fellow at the Brighton and Sussex Medical School and the Engineering & Design department at Sussex, said: "The specific applications of TexRAD include predicting early response to treatment, prognosis and tissue characterization. Particularly in colorectal cancer, TexRAD could identify earlier patients with poor prognosis and thereby can assist the clinician to modify treatment early and improve patient outcome. TexRAD can be integrated easily within existing hospital imaging systems without the need for any hardware modifications and can also be accessed via a pay-per-click service."

TexRAD's clinical advisor and Consultant Radiologist, Prof. Ken Miles of MM said: "The software can extract and quantify 'hidden' information from existing scans (CT, MRI, etc.) thereby increasing considerably the depth of information given by radiological images."

The technology is currently being evaluated by clinicians at other locations. Dr Vicky Goh, Consultant Radiologist at Mount Vernon Hospital, Northwood (UK), said: "TexRAD provides unique tumor information, which in addition to standard morphological assessment, could improve therapeutic assessment in renal cancer treated with tyrosine kinase inhibitors. The preliminary results are encouraging for its use as a predictive biomarker in this clinical context."

Dr Olga Strukowska, Consultant Radiologist of the Western Sussex Hospitals Trust (UK) said: "The preliminary TexRAD results were impressive: I was able to identify an invasive breast cancer focus within larger area of pre-operative, non-invasive disease. This information, used as an addition to standard morphological assessment, could assist clinicians in treatment planning and optimal selection for sentinel node biopsy, and potentially minimize the number of two-step breast surgery, which is undertaken whenever an invasive disease is established, not before final histology."

More evaluation is being undertaken in clinical settings, in both the UK and Denmark, and very soon in the USA and other European countries (e.g. Italy) to enhance further development and clinical usability.

To find out more about TexRAD contact Dr. Balaji Ganeshan, Director of TexRAD, by emailing b.ganeshan@sussex.ac.uk

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By: Danielle Treanor
Last updated: Friday, 25 February 2011

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