Endofotonics’ IMDX™ system is built on the Raman Spectroscopy technique – a vibrational technique capable of probing biomolecular changes associated with cellular transformation when tissue molecules were ‘excited’ by laser light directed at the tissue. The Raman technique has shown great promise for histopathologic assessments (ie, optical biopsy) at the biomolecular level; however due to the challenge of capturing inherently weak Raman signal, slow spectral measurement speed and miniaturisation of Raman probe with depth resolving capability that can pass down the instrument channel of medical endoscopes, application of the technique has thus far been limited to ex-vivo usage only.
A/P Huang after more than a decade of research has resolved the challenges of applying Raman Spectroscopy techniques into the body. Endofotonics is currently the trail blazer with the world’s first Raman Spectroscopy endoscopic device capable of capturing molecular signatures of tissues during endoscopy. Spectral information acquired during the endoscopic examination is matched against a database to provide real time, diagnosis almost instantaneously.
To date Endofotonics has built two systems, deployed the systems in clinical settings and demonstrated ability for in-vivo molecular diagnosis of even pre-cancerous tissues in more than 500 patients undergoing endoscopic examinations across diverse cancer types like stomach, oesophagus, colon, rectum, head and neck, and cervix. Preliminary data indicates diagnostic accuracy, sensitivity and specificity of more than 90% in gastric dysplasia, gastric cancer and oesophageal cancer.
Briefly, the Endofotonics’ IMDX™ system consists of:
- A Raman spectroscopy system
- A proprietary specially designed fibre-optic confocal Raman endoscopic probe that comprises a central light delivery fibre for laser light delivery and collection fibres for vivo tissue Raman signal collection of tissue spectra in <0.5s. The Raman probe can be inserted into the instrument channel of conventional endoscopes and put in gentle contact with tissue surface for in-vivo epithelial characterization and diagnosis.
- A proprietary online customized computer- based software control system that enables epithelial molecular information to be extracted, analyzed in real-time with almost instantaneous display of diagnosis.
A schematic diagram of the IMDX™ system
Endofotonics’ IMDX™ system has the potential to be used in the diagnosis of all diseases where biomolecular information on tissues is needed.