New tool 'could help enhance brain cancer treatment'

7 July 2014
A successful trial has been carried out on a new tool that could revolutionise treatment for brain cancer patients.
Researchers at Purdue University and Brigham and Women's Hospital in the US have created a mass spectrometry device that sprays a microscopic stream of charged solvent on to the surface of tissue in the brain while it is exposed by surgeons.
This produces a colour-coded image that not only reveals the location, nature and concentration of tumour cells, but can also detect tumour residues that have been left behind in the patient following surgery.
At present, treatment relies on the surgeon looking at the tumour, but it can be difficult to differentiate its boundaries from healthy brain tissue.
Writing in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, study co-author Graham Cooks said: "The instrumentation is relatively small and inexpensive and could easily be installed in operating rooms to aid neurosurgeons. This study shows the tremendous potential it has to enhance patient care."
Malignant brain tumours can easily spread into the normal brain tissue that surrounds them and cause pressure and damage, so this new technique could prove vital in removing them.

Health News is provided by Adfero in collaboration with Spire Healthcare. Please note that all copy above is ©Adfero Ltd. and does not reflect views or opinions of Spire Healthcare unless explicitly stated. Additional comments on the page from individual Spire consultants do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of other consultants or Spire Healthcare

Find a treatment, test or scan available at:


Find a consultant

Use one or more of the options below to search for a consultant and link through to view their Spire profile.


Let us help you

fill out this form and we will get back to you:

Please select a hospital

We can call you

Please enter your details below and we will call you back.

What is the aim of your enquiry?

Please select a hospital

If we are unable to reach you by phone, please include your email address so that we can get in touch...



© Spire Healthcare Group plc (2016)