Zenascope® Determines Presence or Lack of Bloodflow During Kidney Surgery

DURHAM, N.C. -- Zenalux Biomedical, Inc., a leader in biophotonic diagnostics, reports that the Zenascope® was deployed in a recent study by investigators at Tulane University that looked at the feasibility of quantitative diffuse reflectance spectroscopy for targeted measurement of renal ischemia during laparoscopic partial nephrectomy in a large animal model. The study explored the effect of renal ischemia using the Zenascope, comparing clamping of the main renal artery to more selective arteries including how well the instrument could tell the depth of ischemia (how good of a job the surgeon did at stopping the blood flow). It also allowed the surgeon to monitor the duration of ischemia. The findings were published in the October issue of the Journal of Biomedical Optics.

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Partial nephrectomy is gaining traction in kidney cancer patients because only the diseased part of the kidney is being removed as opposed to the entire organ. However, when the main artery that feeds the kidney is clamped during surgery, blood flow is cut off to the entire kidney rather than just the diseased area.

“Starving the kidney for oxygen can cause poor function after surgery, so one of the new techniques is to selectively clamp the artery that feeds the tumor so the rest of the kidney maintains oxygen flow. The challenge becomes determining if you've got the correct artery, and from that point, whether or not you’ve stopped blood flow into the area that needs to be removed,” explained Quincy Brown, Assistant Professor of Biomedical Engineering at Tulane University and co-author of the study. “By using the Zenascope as a diagnostic tool to determine the presence or lack of bloodflow, we are eliminating the guesswork and the surgeon is able to ensure selective ischemia.”

This highly successful feasibility study was also conducted laparoscopically, thus supporting a minimally invasive surgical procedure.

Commented Dr. Jesko von Windheim, CEO of Zenalux: “This study was the first of its kind conducted using this type of technology—quantitative optical spectroscopy measurement—for its utility for partial ischemia during partial nephrectomy. The Zenascope successfully illustrated that its use promotes decreased operating time and improved outcome by limiting damage to healthy kidney tissue in an animal model.”

The Zenascope® system is a specialized, real-time, non-invasive, diagnostic device that shines white light on opaque target media and then measures and analyzes the reflected signal. The Zenascope system can also easily be tuned to include additional absorbers of interest. This unique capability is expected to enable improved diagnosis, better treatment, and ultimately cost reduction in the health care system. The system is currently designated for investigational use only. Other application areas currently include accelerating feedback in drug discovery; breast tumor margin assessment; response to therapy; breast biopsy; cervical cancer detection; and head and neck cancer detection.

To learn more about the Zenascope and the technology, visit www.zenalux.com. Contact Zenalux at 2608 Erwin Road, Suite 148-164, Durham, NC 27705; call (919)-794-5757; email info@zenalux.com.

About Zenalux Biomedical, Inc.
Zenalux Biomedical is a biomedical diagnostics start-up company that is developing novel biophotonic-based tools to aid in the diagnosis and treatment of cancer as well as other disease states. The company has established its leadership in biophotonics through its deep ties to Duke University and growing relationships with other leaders in the industry. The company’s flagship product is the Zenascope, a patent-protected, photonic system that non-destructively measures dominant tissue chromophores (such as oxygenated hemoglobin, deoxygenated hemoglobin and beta-carotene) as well as changes in cellular morphology and density. The system is currently designated for investigational use only. Applications areas currently under study include: accelerating feedback in drug discovery, breast tumor margin assessment, breast biopsy, and cervical cancer and head and neck cancer detection. The Zenascope is currently designated for investigational purposes only. Zenalux Biomedical is based in Durham, N.C. Visit www.zenalux.com.