Dissertation Defense: Travis Sawyer, "Multimodal optical imaging for tissue characterization and disease diagnosis"

    Thursday, March 18, 2021 - 8:30am

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    Password: sawyer2021


    Ovarian and esophageal cancer are particularly deadly cancers, with five-year survival rates of less than 50% and 20% respectively. These high mortality rates are primarily due to the lack of effective screening methods, which lead to late diagnosis when the cancer has already spread. This challenging paradigm has led to strong interest in the area of cancer screening in both the ovaries and esophagus, with the ultimate goal of identifying early stage tumors, allowing more effective treatment.

    While no existing screening techniques have proven to be highly effective for these cancers, the application of optical imaging has shown promise with recent technological advances. In particular, the use of multimodal imaging techniques to provide complementary information has been shown to be effective for early detection of disease. This dissertation focuses on the application of multimodal imaging including multiphoton microscopy, optical coherence tomography and fluorescence imaging, for tissue characterization and detection of esophageal and ovarian cancers.

    This dissertation presents several novel analysis methods to use multimodal imaging data for tissue classification. In addition, two tissue studies are presented demonstrating the effectiveness of multimodal imaging for disease detection. Finally, the design of an endoscope to implement multimodal imaging in vivo is presented. Ultimately, the results indicate that multimodal optical imaging has a promising future in improving the standard of care for esophageal and ovarian cancer screening.