The objectives are to develop techniques for optical identification of diseased cardiovascular tissue to a technological level, where their potential usefulness in cardiology can be evaluated. Several different laser spectroscopy techniques and potential candidates for transluminal diseased tissue identification will be examined. The spectroscopic techniques to be evaluated are laser-induced fluorescence, diffused reflection, Raman and infrared spectroscopy. In vitro tissue studies will be performed for several types of cardiovascular tissue abnormalities of interest for transluminal identification: vessel stenosis, RF-ablation-related tissue lesions, tissue characteristic of arrhythmia "foci" and early tissue changes indicating a rejection of a transplanted heart. Clinically adapted instruments based on the two best performing techniques will constructed, and compared in clinical studies.
The development of laser assisted diagnostic techniques is now a rapidly growing field in biology and medicine, as it has been demonstrated to provide unique information making it possible to identify diseased tissue. In cardiology there exists a need to nonintrusively identify several types of lesions in real time. Such lesions include atherosclerotic plaques occluding blood vessels, characteristic of myocardial tissue acting as foci for arrhythmia and tissue changes in connection with transcatheter ablation or immune rejecting responses following a heart transplantation. The possibilities to develop minimally invasive diagnostic and therapeutic techniques are key issues in the present programme concerning laser-based minimally-invasive diagnostic techniques. The development of reliable techniques that could identify diseased tissue with a transluminal examination, without the need for biopsies would certainly be a progress in diagnostic cardiology. It would mean that larger tissue areas could be examined yielding improved diagnostic outcome. Also areas where no normal biopsies can be collected due to the risk for complications could be examined. In this context, the development of new minimally invasive procedures in cardiology would be an advancement for future patients care, for the health care system, as they may reduce the cost-demanding invasive or surgical procedures, and for innovative companies to develop new products for such purposes.
Funding SchemeCSC - Cost-sharing contracts
1105 AZ Amsterdam