Current Research and Scholarly Interests
Our clinical and research interests are dedicated to improving the health and lives of women by breast cancer detection and diagnosis using imaging, in both development and testing of new imaging techniques, and transfer of new technology to the clinical arena.
As Director of the Stanford Breast Imaging Section and Professor of Radiology, our group of research program has produced publications in tomosynthesis, analog and digital mammography, computer-aided detection, breast ultrasound, breast cancer screening, high-resolution and dynamic contrast-enhanced Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), MRI-guided breast biopsy, MR spectroscopy, fine-needle aspiration cytology, stereotactic needle biopsy, partial breast irradiation, sentinel lymph node biopsy, percutaneous tumor ablation including radiofrequency and other devices, outcomes, compliance and imaging of neoadjuvant chemotherapy. Continuing research involves diagnosis with MRI, diffusion-weighted imaging. New research involves evaluation of breast density and breast density legislation, tomosynthesis, blood biomarkers and the genetics of breast cancer and the normal surrounding stroma, and repetitive stress injury in breast imagers.
In 2015 we will begin evaluating contrast-enhanced digital mammography, a new technology that uses intravenous contrast and dual energy mammography to display breast cancers using the concept of angiogenesis, similar to breast MRI but at a fraction of the cost.
The are many reasons that the Stanford Breast Imaging research program is successful. Stanford provides the optimum location in Silcon Valley for developing, researching and implementing new technology and transferring that technology to the clinical arena in our busy all-digital Breast Cancer Center which opened in 2004. Working with world-class basic science researchers, engineers,chemists and physicists at the Lucas Center for Magnetic Resonance Spectrocopy and Imaging and at the Clark Center/ Molecular Imaging Program at Stanford (under the the direction of Dr. Sanjiv Gamghir), the Stanford Breast Imaging service provides state-of-the-art imaging with access to the latest technologies and imaging modalities developed at these research labs. Specifically, both the Lucas Center (which now houses a cyclotron and wet lab) and the Clark Center are located within a block from the Medical Center and from each other. In addition, a Stanford Radiology Outcomes Section evaluates the impact of these new technologies on breast cancer patients. Thus, breast cancer imaging research is supported by a uniquely qualified team of Stanford Radiology Engineering, Physics and Medical faculty, postdoctoral candidates and graduate students from around the world. We have demonstrated the effectiveness of this team by our development, transfer and publication of MRI techniques to breast cancer imaging.
The Stanford Breast Imaging service has state-of-the-art imaging equipment to provide imaging research material, including all tomosynthesis digital mammography units with CAD, PACS to correlate ultrasound, MRI and PET/CT images and a hosptial-wide patient computer information system. Research stems from clinical questions generated at the Breast Center, clinical dilmmas encountered during everyday practice, and implemenation oft new techniques generated at Stanford and in Silicon Valley to improve women's health.
Stanford is one of few USA Centers routinely using MRI-guided needle localization and vacuum assisted MRI-guided breast core biopsy; we do over 1000 diagnostic breast MRI studies/year. The critical mass of scientists, engineers and clinicians at Stanford provides a unique opportunity and platform to bring new diagnostic tools and detection methods to investigate both fundementals and clinical concerns in breast cancer diagnosis and treatment, and to teach those new methods to the general radiologist.