Optically-Guided Diagnosis & Treatment of Colonic Cancer

Photo of Irving BigioIrving Bigio, Ph.D.forceps
Professor – Biomedical Engineering
Professor – Electrical and Computer Engineering
Boston University – College of Engineering



Satish Singh, M.D.
Assistant Professor – Medicine
Boston University – School of Medicine
Boston Medical Center – Gastroenterology


OBJECTIVE: To develop alight-based spectroscopy system that enables real-time, in vivo assessment of colonic polyp morphology (cancerous vs. pre-cancerous vs. non-cancerous) using the core technologies of “ESS” (Elastic Scattering Spectroscopy) and specific signal processing algorithms that enable statistically significant outcomes (e.g. high Negative Predictive Value (NPV). The system is fully integrated with surgical tools (e.g forceps, snare, etc.), it eliminates pathology work-ups for non dysplastic colon polyps (creating cost savings), and improves throughput for therapeutic clearing colonoscopy.

Clinical prototypes have been developed and in vivo tests have been performed on over 300 patients during routine colonoscopies with over 500 samples processed (90% specificity, 90% NPV).

ESS systemESS tissue interrogation

ESS System and tissue interrogation

Biomedical Optics Lab