PATHOLOGY VISIONS 2014 PRESENTER
Abstract: Pathology is a conservative discipline being confronted by advances in a wide variety of technologies, and, at least in the United States, by fundamental changes in health care delivery. The resulting trends are proceeding in opposite direction: towards increasing complexity and sophistication, or, alternatively, towards low-cost simplification. This talk will cover examples of both. In one high-tech example, a novel multiplexed imaging method will be described. Increasing molecular sophistication in biomarker science has led to the need for detection of multiple targets with spatial context in ever-smaller tissue samples. Existing immuno¬histochemical (IHC) techniques use antibodies tagged with fluorophores or enzyme reporters, but multiplexed IHC is not routinely used in clinical settings. A promising new approach uses mass-tagged antibodies and ion beam imaging to enable the simultaneous detection of 40 or more antigens, at better spatial resolution than light microscopy. Novel stroma-based metrics and immunoprofiling may benefit. Other developments in optical detection can image tissues directly without conventional microtome or cryotome sectioning, using full-field OCT, or spectrally encoded confocal microscopy for example, to generate diagnostic-grade images. Since cellular-scale imaging can be performed endoscopically in vivo, the resulting images may not necessarily be read by pathologists. Or by humans, as advances in machine-learning based automated tissue diagnostics and segmentation may allow tissue analysis and quantitation to be performed largely by computers. Finally, recent advances in inexpensive cell-phone-based microscopy may positively affect the availability of diagnostic services in low-resource settings.
Biography: Richard Levenson is Professor and Vice Chair for Strategic Technologies in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the University of California, Davis. He received his BA in History and Literature at Harvard College, and MD at the University of Michigan. A pathology residency at Washington University, St. Louis, was followed by a Cancer Research fellowship at the University of Rochester, and an Asst. Professorship in Pathology at Duke University. He became active in the optics field while at the NSF Center for Light Microscope Imaging and Biotechnology (Carnegie Mellon) and then joined Cambridge Research and Instrumentation, Inc. (CRI—now part of PerkinElmer) in Boston, eventually as Vice President for Research. Following that, he consulted in optics, software, instrumentation and digital pathology until joining UC Davis in 2012.