Dr. Pierre Lane Laboratory aims to develop tools that use light ("Optical Tools") for the early detection and grading of cancer and cancer precursors. Optical tools for the early detection of cancer can include instrumentation, software, computer algorithms, and devices that can be used clinically or in a lab to measure the structure, shape, and biochemical behaviors of diseased tissues (either while they are in the patient or after they have been removed). With the emergence of new imaging technologies – like Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) – and significant advances in telecommunications (including things like smart-phones), Dr. Lane’s Lab is developing powerful new screening and diagnostic tools that are both very portable and can capture a lot of information that is useful for managing treatment of cancer patients. Devices from this lab are not only improving cancer care in developed nations such as Canada; they are also being used in developing countries where screening infrastructure is often lacking (and preventable cancers currently flourish as a consequence). Dr. Lane and his team are presently collaborating with several other BC Cancer scientists and clinicians to develop novel devices for use in managing cancers of the oral cavity, lungs, uterine cervix, and ovaries. Some of these devices are already in routine use in the clinic and improving cancer survival rates. Others are still being developed and tested and offer even greater positive impacts for patient care.

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Dual modality OCT-AFI

Both optical coherence tomography (OCT) and autofluorescence imaging (AFI) have shown potential for cancer detection. OCT is able to measure epithelial thickness and identify micro invasion through the basement membrane. AFI in the lung and oral cavity is used clinically to identify abnormal tissue and guide biopsy site selection. Recently, we demonstrated the ability of catheter-based AFI to identify vascular networks in small peripheral airways.

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