X-ray Darkfield Contrast for Improved COVID-19 Detection in Chest X-Rays - Basic Physics & First Cli

When:  Feb 24, 2021 from 12:00 PM to 1:30 PM (ET)

X-ray Darkfield Contrast for Improved COVID-19 Detection in Chest X-Rays - Basic Physics & First Clinical Results

  • Abstract: Diseases of the respiratory system are leading global causes of chronic morbidity and mortality. While advanced medical imaging technologies of today deliver detailed diagnostic information, a low-dose, fast, and inexpensive option for early detection and/or follow-ups is still lacking. Here, we report on the first human application of a novel modality, namely X-ray dark-field chest imaging, which might fill this gap. Enabling the assessment of microstructural changes in lung parenchyma, this technique presents a more sensitive alternative to conventional chest X-rays, and yet requires only a fraction of the dose applied in computed tomography (CT). For this first clinical evaluation, we have built a novel dark-field chest X-ray system, which is also capable of simultaneously acquiring a conventional thorax radiograph. With this first system worldwide, we are presently conducting two patient studies. The first is devoted to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), the second to severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). First results look very promising and show that X-ray dark-field chest imaging allows the diagnosis of COPD and COVID-19 more effectively than conventional chest X-ray does.
  • Bio: Franz Pfeiffer studied physics at Munich's Ludwig Maximilian University (Germany) and was awarded doctorates by the Institut Laue-Langevin (France) and the University of Saarbrücken (2003). Following subsequent positions as a post-doc in Urbana-Champaign (USA) and as a member of scientific staff at the Paul Scherrer Institute (Switzerland, 2008), he assumed the position of assistant professor at École Polytechnique Fédérale in Lausanne (2008). He was appointed full professor and head of the Institute of Biomedical Physics at the Technical University of Munich in 2009. In 2016, Professor Pfeiffer became the director of the Munich School of BioEngineering. He has received numerous awards including the Leibniz Award of the German Science Foundation, the Swiss Science Prize Latsis, as well as an ERC Starting and an ERC Advanced grant.
  • Bio: Daniela Pfeiffer studied medicine at the University of Regensburg and finished her certification as medical doctor in 2007. Following her medical education she obtained her doctorate in 2008 at the radiology department of the Technical University in Munich and continued her academic career as assistant professor for radiology (2015). In 2016 she obtained an additional degree as Master of Business Administration (MHBA) from the University Nuernberg. Besides her clinical work as radiologist (attending) she leads the CT research program at the TUM university hospital Klinikum rechts der Isar. She is also an active member of the ethics committee and acts as expert for quality assurance in radiology. She frequently teaches at international conferences to fellow radiologists and radiologists in training. She has received several awards including the Röntgen Award of the University of Giessen.
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