SUMMARY OF INVENTION
Positron emission tomography (PET) images are typically acquired over time spans of minutes, and can be degraded by a patient’s natural respiratory motion. In the case of cancer detection, this motion can impose limitations on lesion detectability, lesion volume, and standardized uptake value (SUV) quantification.
Respiratory gating is a strategy for overcoming this image degradation, but traditional methods for acquiring gating signal require added complexity and cumbersome hardware, with varying quality at each implementation.
An MSK investigator has pioneered concepts and technology for data-driven motion management in PET, which can form the foundation of a commercial software-driven gating product. This novel method utilizes inherent fluctuations in raw signal to facilitate motion correction of PET data without the need for additional equipment. There are numerous advantages of data-driven gating technology, including:
- Fully automated motion characterization requires no user input. The processing needed for motion characterization can run automatically in the background, with no required changes in acquisition protocol or operator effort.
- Quality is standardized and independent of operator. Motion recovery is fully automated and will perform comparably across machines/centers.
- This technology transforms PET into a robust 4D imaging modality. Software runs automatically to provide complementary 4D information for users, should they choose to utilize it.
- Results are impressive to medical practitioners, who are often not aware that significant image improvement is possible.
- Technology is well-documented and has been benchmarked in several noteworthy publications.
- Strong IP position, which includes a competitive priority date with issued claims.
The global nuclear imaging equipment market is projected to be worth more than $2 billion by 2020, and data-driven gating is being pursued by several commercial leaders within the PET space. This intellectual property and know-how can form the foundation of a newly-developed software-driven gating product, offering significant opportunity for market penetration.
- Kesner et al. (2010) A new fast and fully automated software based algorithm for extracting respiratory signal from raw PET data and its comparison to other methods. Medical Physics (PubMed link)
- Kesner et al. (2016) Validation of Software Gating: A Practical Technology for Respiratory Motion Correction in PET. Radiology (PubMed link)
STAGE OF DEVELOPMENT
Issued U.S. Patents: Basic (9,814,431) on November 14, 2017; Continuation (10,117,625) on November 6, 2018); and Continuation (10,448,903) on Oct. 22, 2019. U.S. Continuation application 16,395,201 pending.
Adam Kesner, PhD, Assistant Attending, Nuclear Imaging Physics, Memorial Hospital Research Laboratories