Dr. Baowei Fei was awarded a five-year NIH R01 grant
The project is to translate our positron emission tomography (PET)/transrectal ultrasound (TRUS) fusion guided technology into a commercially supported platform for improving the detection of prostate cancer. It has been reported that the long-term prostate cancer specific survival of patients initially managed with active surveillance (AS) or watchful waiting for low-risk prostate cancer ranges from 97% to 100%. However, among all men with indolent prostate cancer, the rate of aggressive treatment is as high as 64.3%. The costs for the treatment are $12 billion each year in the USA. One reason for aggressive treatment is due to the fact that the current standard diagnosis with transrectal ultrasound-guided biopsy can miss up to 30% of cancers. A major concern for active surveillance is the risk of high-grade cancer that may be missed by the current diagnosis. This research is to develop innovative imaging technology that can improve the detection rate and distinguish aggressive cancer, which requires treatment, from the non-aggressive disease, which can be well-managed with active surveillance. The technology will provide clinicians a new imaging tool to select millions of low-risk prostate cancer patients for active surveillance instead of unnecessary treatment, therefore may help save billions of dollars in treatment costs and improve the care of prostate cancer patients.