Press Releases > Optical Probe for in situ Assessment of Pulmonary Fibrosis

Optical Probe for in situ Assessment of Pulmonary Fibrosis

Press Release

Press Release

Physical Sciences Inc, in collaboration with the Department of Pathology at the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) and the Divisions of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at MGH and Beth Israel Lahey Health, is developing and evaluating a novel technology for assessing pulmonary fibrosis, a respiratory disease leading to serious breathing problems, under a research program from the National Institutes of Health.

This disease consists of the accumulation of excess fibrous connective tissue within the lungs (this process is called fibrosis), leading to thickening of the walls of the bronchioles, and thus causing reduced oxygen supply in the blood. Since misdiagnosis is common, a biopsy is ultimately performed to confirm findings. Unfortunately, large pieces of tissue are needed to evaluate the presence of fibrosis so video assisted thoracoscopic wedge biopsy (VATS) is used for this purpose. However, this procedure has multiple side effects and requires tissue processing and pathologic interpretation that makes the procedure expensive, while the results are not immediately available.

PSI’s alternative approach to regular VATS wedge resections is to investigate tissue morphology and mechanical properties in situ by using a minimally invasive needle-type smart optical probe that eliminates the need to remove any tissue. Furthermore, the results are immediately available during biopsy. This technology will open a new avenue for more efficient diagnosis and treatment of pulmonary diseases, while eliminating side effects associated to the regular biopsy, leading to patient improved quality of life and decreasing healthcare costs.

For more information, contact:
Dr. Nick Iftimia
Area Manager, Biomedical Optics Technology
Physical Sciences Inc.
Telephone: (978) 689-0003