Members of NMPCE and Radiology, in collaboration with local company Kromek, Newcastle University (NU) and University College London (UCL), have been awarded a three year Innovate UK biomedical catalyst grant worth two million pounds.
The project focusses on the development and evaluation of Kromek’s next generation tomographic Molecular Breast Imaging (MBI) technology which is an emerging nuclear medicine breast cancer imaging tool. The team hopes that this next generation MBI machine will provide a safe, accurate and cost-effective imaging tool for women with dense breast tissue, in whom mammography has reduced sensitivity (Kolb et al., 2002, Rosenberg et al., 1998).
Kromek’s new detector and image reconstruction technology aims to improve on current Molecular Breast Imaging (MBI) devices on the market in the USA. The new detectors allow for a significantly lower radiation dose to the patient, whilst maintaining equivalent or potentially further improved the image resolution to current commercial MBI systems.
Building on work undertaken by the team and Kromek since 2018 (see a previous NMPCE blog), the new project will involve:
- Production of a full-sized, clinical MBI system incorporating the new detector technology.
- Technical evaluation of the system.
- A health economic analysis.
- A qualitative study to collect stakeholder feedback.
- A first-in-person clinical study of the device at the RVI.
Within NuTH and NU, the project will be undertaken by the team listed in Table 1. The work will be led by Alison Bray, Lead Healthcare Scientist, and Helen Elliott, Research Scientist, and will involve staff members with the relevant expertise across the organisations. Figure 1 shows some of team members from Kromek, UCL and NuTH.
Alison says, ‘We are delighted to have been awarded further funding to continue this programme of work. We look forward to collaborating with our NuTH colleagues, patient representatives, and the partner organisations to bring this technology one step closer to addressing the significant problem of detecting cancers in women with dense breast tissue.’.
Further information is provided on the NuTH website.
|Alison Bray||Lead Healthcare Scientist||Clinical Engineering, NMPCE||NuTH|
|Michael Drinnan||Head of Clinical Engineering||Clinical Engineering, NMPCE||NuTH|
|Helen Elliott||Research Scientist||Clinical Engineering, NMPCE||NuTH|
|Nerys Forester||Consultant Radiologist||Breast Screening, Radiology||NuTH|
|Karen Gannon||Patient Representative||Various including Breast Cancer Now, Northern Cancer Alliance|
|Kile Green||Senior Test Evaluation Methodologist||Newcastle NIHR MIC||NU|
|Anna Halstead||Project Manager||Newcastle NIHR MIC||NU|
|Liz Jefferson||Head of Nuclear Medicine||Nuclear Medicine, Radiology||NuTH|
|Clare Lendrem||Senior Statistical Methodologist||Newcastle NIHR MIC||NU|
|Richard Peace||Deputy Head of Nuclear Medicine||Nuclear Medicine, Radiology||NuTH|
|George Petrides||Consultant Radiologist||Nuclear Medicine, Radiology||NuTH|
|Tim Powell||Clinical Scientist (Pre-Registrant)||Clinical Measurement, NMPCE||NuTH|
|Erika Ridley||Health Promotion Officer||Breast Screening, Radiology||NuTH|
|Cameron Williams||Clinical Test Evaluation Methodologist||Newcastle NIHR MIC||NU|
KOLB, T. M., LICHY, J. & NEWHOUSE, J. H. 2002. Comparison of the Performance of Screening Mammography, Physical Examination, and Breast US and Evaluation of Factors that Influence Them: An Analysis of 27,825 Patient Evaluations. Radiology, 225, 165-175.
ROSENBERG, R. D., HUNT, W. C., WILLIAMSON, M. R., GILLILAND, F. D., WIEST, P. W., KELSEY, C. A., KEY, C. R. & LINVER, M. N. 1998. Effects of age, breast density, ethnicity, and estrogen replacement therapy on screening mammographic sensitivity and cancer stage at diagnosis: review of 183,134 screening mammograms in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Radiology, 209, 511-8.
MBI: Molecular Breast Imaging
NIHR MIC: National Institute for Health and Care Research MedTech and In Vitro Diagnostics Co-operative
NMPCE: Northern Medical Physics and Clinical Engineering
NU: Newcastle University
NuTH: Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
RVI: Royal Victoria Infirmary
UCL: University College London