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Multimodal Novel Technique for Breast Cancer Detection and Classification Combining PEM with UWB

Final Report Summary - BREASTCANCERDETECT (Multimodal Novel Technique for Breast Cancer Detection and Classification Combining PEM with UWB)

The project was divided in 6 Work Packages (WP) which comprised the following objectives. The main objective of WP 1 was to develop numerical breast models compatible for simulations of both Positron Emission Mammography (PEM) and microwave Ultra WideBand (UWB) radar imaging modalities. The main objective of WP 2 was to complete simple tumour detection in the comparable breast models, using both PEM and UWB. The main objective of WP 3 was to complete complex tumour detection (PEM). The main objective of WP 4 was to complete UWB-based classification of PEM-detected tumours. The main objective of WP 5 was to organise and complete a number of dissemination activities. The main objective of WP 6 concerned the management of the project.

The researcher successfully developed a number of numerical breast models which were suited to be simultaneously tested with both PEM and UWB imaging modalities. Several tumour models (of several sizes and shapes) were placed in different breast models in different places within the breast and simulated for both PEM and UWB imaging modalities. Tumour detection was completed for both PEM and UWB, and compared between the two modalities. Complex tumour detection and subsequent classification were completed using UWB. A number of parallel lines of research were also explored during this project, most significantly the researcher tested the feasibility of using UWB microwave imaging to detect and diagnose axillary lymph nodes to aid breast cancer diagnosis. These initial results are very promising – an award was won: 1st place in the MSc category of the Fraunhofer Portugal Challenge – and have supported a number of grant applications currently under review.

The researcher has published 4 journal papers and 19 conference papers during the period of this Intra-European Fellowship. Also, she was the recipient of 6 awards and prizes. She also organised several scientific meetings, focus/convened sessions at conferences, talks, seminars. She has supervised 1 PhD student, 6 Masters students, 4 undergraduate students, and is mentoring the work of 2 PhD students.

The researcher expects to further explore the classification algorithms resulting from WP 4 and test them with the clinically-informed breast tumour models developed in collaboration with the National University of Ireland, Galway. The researcher plans to visit this institution in March 2016 with this purpose. This institution is currently developing a UWB microwave imaging device for breast imaging and these algorithms may be suitable for implementation in their prototype device.