Smarter solutions for better colon cancer screening

American BioOptics, LLC, With Evanston Northwestern Healthcare, Receives STTR Award from National Institutes of Health

Funding Will Advance Research in Biomedical Optics to Improve Detection Rates of Pre-Cancerous Polyps During Colonoscopy

— American BioOptics (ABO), in conjunction with Evanston Northwestern Healthcare, received on September 28, 2007, a Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) award from the National Institutes of Health. The award enables ABO to perform clinical trials using its advanced biomedical optics technology, which can identify patients at risk for colon cancer, and has the potential of improving the effectiveness of the millions of colonoscopies performed each year.

Colonoscopy has traditionally been used to identify polyps which can develop into colon cancer, the second leading cause of cancer deaths among Americans. Evidence suggests that up to 10% of large polyps are missed during this widely established screening test.

ABO and Evanston Northwestern Healthcare are hoping to improve the performance of colonoscopy with the development of a novel biomedical optics technology, called Early Increase in Blood-Supply (EIBS). EIBS looks at the surface cells of the colon to identify areas that show increased blood supply, a possible indicator of the presence of nearby polyps. When used in conjunction with traditional colonoscopy, EIBS could guide physicians to polyps that would otherwise be overlooked. Andrew Cittadine, CEO of American BioOptics believes, “The EIBS technology could have major importance for colon cancer prevention efforts in the United States. With the aid of EIBS during colonoscopy, physicians may find additional polyps, which could save lives.”

The STTR award follows on the heels of a National Science Foundation Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) award given to the company in June of this year. Both awards are granted by the federal government to small domestic companies conducting innovative research or research and development that has potential for commercialization and public benefit. American BioOptics has qualified for a STTR Fast-Track award, which provides Phase 1 and 2 funding to the company simultaneously.

American BioOptics is a medical device company located in Chicago, Illinois. The company is working to revolutionize colon cancer screening, and eventually other cancers, with a highly accurate, minimally invasive test based on a novel light scattering technology platform. For further information about ABO and its technology, visit the company website at