Pathology Presents: Quantitative molecular imaging biomarkers for early assessment of cancer therapy response

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Paul E. Kinahan, PhD, FIEEE
Vice Chair for Research and Professor
Department of Radiology
University of Washington

Faculty Sponsor

Raymond Monnat, Jr, MD

Date & Time

March 8, 2017 at 4:30pm - 5:30pm


Health Sciences Building, T-739


Paul E. Kinahan, PhD, FIEEE
Vice Chair for Research and Professor of Radiology
Adjunct Professor of Bioengineering and Physics
Head of the Imaging Research Laboratory
Director of PET/CT Physics, UW Medical Center
University of Washington


The ability to assay tumor biologic features and the impact of drugs on tumor biology is fundamental to drug development. Advances in our ability to measure genomics, gene expression, protein expression, and cellular biology have led to a host of new targets for anticancer drug therapy. In translating new drugs into clinical trials and clinical practice, these same assays serve to identify patients most likely to benefit from specific anticancer treatments. As cancer therapy becomes more individualized and targeted, there is an increasing need to characterize tumors and identify therapeutic targets to select therapy most likely to be successful in treating the individual patient’s cancer. Advances in quantitative molecular imaging, particularly positron emission tomography (PET) imaging, have enabled quantitative non-invasive molecular assays. Molecular imaging can be considered an in vivo assay technique, capable of measuring regional tumor biology without perturbing it. This makes molecular imaging a unique tool for cancer drug development, complementary to traditional assay methods, and a potentially powerful method for guiding targeted therapy in clinical trials and clinical practice. The ability to quantify, in absolute measures, regional in vivo biologic parameters strongly supports the use of molecular imaging as a tool to develop and guide cancer therapies.