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Hamilton sites chosen to lead the development and evaluation of new technologies for detecting breast cancer


Hamilton, ON – The city of Hamilton has been chosen by GE Healthcare to be the first site in the world to receive new prototype technologies for use in a molecular breast imaging research program. Researchers there will design and lead clinical trials to evaluate new technologies which use molecular imaging probes that target breast cancer. This cutting-edge strategy has the potential to find very small tumours, leading to early intervention. Trials will be geared towards high-risk women who are not currently well served by mammography.

Molecular imaging needs two things: a radiopharmaceutical that highlights cancer cells and an imaging device. GE Healthcare is developing prototype breast imaging technologies and in an international competition, chose Hamilton to become the first site in the world to receive its new technologies.

GE picked Hamilton based on the strength of its internationally recognized breast cancer research and clinical trials (Ontario Clinical Oncology Group), nuclear medicine program and the work being done by the Centre for Probe Development and Commercialization (CPDC), a new organization focused on the development and commercialization of molecular imaging probes and related technologies. The CPDC will be developing new probes for use with this type of breast cancer imaging strategy.

GE technologies are expected to be located at Hamilton’s Henderson General Hospital with the research and development work carried out by McMaster University and Hamilton Health Sciences. Through careful evaluation in clinical trials, researchers will determine the full potential of the molecular breast imaging strategy.

“At GE Healthcare, we are dedicated to early detection, and developing technologies to better manage breast disease. We are thrilled with the possibility of bringing to Ontario and to the CPDC a new breast imaging technology platform, the first of its kind, to be utilized as part of their clinical study,” says Peter Robertson, general manager, GE Healthcare Canada.

The Ontario government is contributing $450,000 in funding towards the project, through the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research. Also through the institute, Ontario is providing $4 million in the Centre for Probe Development and Commercialization.