Market: In 2009
there were approximately 1.5 million cases of cancer diagnosed in the United
States alone. Some portion of this
patient population will develop lymphedemia due to damage to the lymphatic
system from their treatment. This condition is characterized by
fibrosis from localized
fluid retention and tissue
swelling. Some clinics currently
treat lymphedemia with sequential grade pump therapy or specialized garments;
however, as with any condition, an early indication of who will and will not
develop lymphedemia may allow more time to provide specialized treatments in
advance of symptom development.
Patents and practitioners need systems that will provide clear and
reliable images of the lymphatic system for determination of problems.
Current Problems: The lymphatic imaging systems on the
market today typically use a specialized dye and a device to image the dye;
however, all of these systems have one of several drawbacks related to either
the dye or the camera.
Additionally, there is frequently a lag time between imaging and
resolution, and, often, the systems are unable to provide flow images showing
the actual course of lymph through the tissue. These flow images are critical to
practitioners for determination of why and how lymphedemia is developing in a
Technology: Dr. Eva Sevick and her
collaborators have developed an extensive patent portfolio aimed at overcoming
the deficiencies in existing lymphatic system imaging methods. Her system provides real time images of
the lymphatic system by making use not of expensive CT scanners or PET imagers,
but of less expensive specialized cameras.
Additionally, through specifically modified dyes, Dr. Sevick’s system is
able to use dosing levels significantly below those of her competitors. By way of example, in clinical use, Dr.
Sevick’s imaging system has diagnosed early lymphedemia in patients who would
not have otherwise been diagnosed.
For the patients this means earlier treatment and avoidance of pain and
more expensive measures.
International Innovation* recently published an article on Dr.
Sevick's Technology, a copy of which can be found here.
The preceding is intended to be a
non-confidential summary of a novel technology created at the University of
Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth), for which the University has
obtained patent protection.
UTHealth Ref. No.:
2010-0064; 2010-0065 and more
Lead Inventor: Dr. Eva
Phone: (713) 500-3369 Fax: (713) 500-0331
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