The extent of surgical resection is the most important factor for determining survival in pediatric brain tumors. Surgical outcomes may be improved through fluorescence-guided surgery (FGS). A clinically approved FGS procedure that uses fluorescence from a molecule called protoporphyrin IX (PpIX) can highlight high-grade pediatric tumors, but this approach requires expensive, bulky surgical microscopes and may not identify low-grade tumors, which account for 30-50% of all pediatric brain tumors. By contrast, the highly cancer-specific near-infrared fluorescent probe LS301 can potentially highlight low-grade tumors, while the wearable goggle augmented imaging and navigation system (GAINS) allows inexpensive real-time intraoperative FGS. The goal of this study is to develop a dual PpIX-LS301-compatible wearable goggle prototype that will enable sensitive detection of low-grade pediatric tumors and eventual clinical translation.
· Development of a dual PpIX-LS301-compatible GAINS (goggle) prototype.
· In vitro prototype characterization to assess sensitivity, resolution, and ease of usage in tissue-like material.
· Evaluation of tumor resection in mouse models of low- and high-grade pediatric brain tumors.
Potential impact on child health
This approach will enable more accurate surgery, potentially decreasing short-term post-surgical neurologic deficits and increasing the extent of tumor resection for both high- and low-grade pediatric brain tumors. This may increase disease-free survival and decrease serious side effects from chemotherapy and radiation therapy used to treat residual tumor in pediatric patients.