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Novel Technology Illuminates Lung and Ovarian Cancer during Surgery

By HospiMedica International staff writers
Posted on 18 Jan 2024
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Image: CYTALUX is the only targeted imaging agent designed to “highlight” ovarian and lung cancer in the body (Photo courtesy of On Target)
Image: CYTALUX is the only targeted imaging agent designed to “highlight” ovarian and lung cancer in the body (Photo courtesy of On Target)

Preoperative scans and surgical skills are vital tools for a successful surgery. However, ovarian and lung cancer cells are not always visible to the naked eye and can hide in plain sight. Now, a novel technology that illuminates lung and ovarian cancer during surgery provides surgeons with an additional measure of “sight” to help them identify the cancer as they operate.

CYTALUX, a novel compound from On Target Laboratories (West Lafayette, IN, USA), is the only FDA-approved molecular imaging agent that illuminates lung and ovarian cancer as an adjunct during surgery, enabling surgeons to detect more cancer for resection. It is the only targeted imaging agent designed to “highlight” ovarian and lung cancer in the body, helping surgeons to see it in real-time, as they operate. This added measure of visibility in the operating room can help the surgeon find cancer that may have otherwise been missed. CYTALUX targets the folate receptors commonly found in many cancers, binds to the cancerous tissue, and illuminates under near-infrared light. A single dose of the agent is administered via intravenous infusion before surgery and assists surgeons in visually identifying additional cancerous tissue to be removed during the operation.

CYTALUX has been proven to help surgeons detect more cancer for removal. In clinical trials, CYTALUX detected additional ovarian and lung cancer that wouldn’t have been detected otherwise. In the ovarian cancer trial, additional lesions were found in 27% of patients that were not identified with conventional methods. In the lung cancer trial, the primary lung lesion was localized in 19% of patients, but not detected with conventional methods. Additionally, in 8% of patients, one or more synchronous malignant lesions not detected by pre-operative imaging were identified.


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