The Optical Society Applauds NCI Research on CT Scans for Lung Cancer Detection


Lyndsay Meyer
The Optical Society

The Optical Society Applauds NCI Research on

CT Scans for Lung Cancer Detection

Experts Available to Discuss CT Scans, Lung Cancer Detection

WASHINGTON, Nov. 5 –The Optical Society (OSA) today commended the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the National Cancer Institute (NCI), both sponsors of the National Lung Screening Trial, for announcing results demonstrating significantly fewer lung cancer deaths among patients screened with Computed Tomography (CT) than patients screened with the traditional method of chest X-rays.  CT scanning is a medical technology that uses X-rays and sophisticated software to create high-resolution, 3-D images of the internal physiology of the human body.

Through its innovative Interactive Scientific Publishing (ISP) initiative, OSA supports medical researchers and instrument technologists developing new approaches to CT with the goal of improving the performance of these revolutionary tools in a variety of diagnostic tests.  Developed in partnership with the National Library of Medicine at NIH, the U.S. Air Force Office of Scientific Research, and Kitware Inc., ISP accelerates the introduction of new diagnostic procedures by providing researchers and clinicians with software for publishing and interactively viewing 2-D and 3-D source data—such as CT scans—allowing scientists to objectively compare the performance of different technologies.  To achieve this, ISP provides researchers with access to a large collection of open source annotated CT scans, a free 3-D visualization application that obtains images from a Web-based image archive database called MIDAS, and links to peer reviewed publications that describe the source data and the scientific conclusions supported by the data.

“Since OSA and its partners launched ISP two years ago, we have seen a dramatic increase in the quality of 3-D image datasets accompanying biomedical optics research,” said Thomas Baer, 2009 OSA president and executive director of the Stanford Photonics Research Center. “OSA has published a number of scientific articles and a special journal issue specifically focusing on developing CT technology for early detection of lung cancer.  It is exciting to see the NCI’s study validate the effectiveness of CT scans as a diagnostic tool.  I congratulate the NCI for completing this paradigm-changing study demonstrating the effectiveness of using CT scanning to reduce the mortality rate of lung cancer.”

The following experts in CT scanning technology, lung cancer imaging or ISP are available to reporters and editors:

CT scanning:

Rick Avila
Kitware, Inc.
Clifton Park, N.Y.
518.371.3971 ext. 123

Lung cancer imaging:

James Mulshine
Rush University Medical Center

Interactive Science Publishing:

Thomas Baer
Stanford Photonics Research Center
Stanford, Calif.

In addition to ISP, OSA has been working to accelerate progress in using CT scans to detect lung cancer through its partnership with the Prevent Cancer Institute, through the publication of a monograph titled Quantitative Imaging Tools for Lung Cancer Drug Assessment, and through a special issue of its open access journal Optics Express featuring research on Imaging in Diagnosis and Treatment of Lung Cancer.  ISP was launched in 2008, allowing improved data for medical images, such as those taken with X-rays, MRIs, CT scans and ultrasounds, or in research involving oil and gas exploration, climatology, pollution monitoring and many other fields. For more information on ISP, visit

EDITOR’S NOTE: Sample ISP datasets of CT scans are available from the experts listed above.  For additional information, contact Lyndsay Meyer, at OSA, 202.416.1435 or