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Spectrum Health study first to identify heart attack-causing plaque in living patients
Date:7/17/2013

Madder says that these findings provide support for further research of arteries narrowed with LCP. He's interested in conducting a prediction study to determine if patients with significant deposits of LCP do have a higher risk of heart attack. "If using NIRS technology is validated as a reliable predictor of cardiac events, then randomized studies of promising systemic and local therapies could be conducted."

"Dr. Madder and the entire team at Spectrum Health have made a significant step forward in the effort to identify the cause of heart attacks in living patients," said James Muller, MD. Muller is chief medical officer of Infraredx, the company that developed the combined NIRS and ultrasound catheter. "It is likely that the signature of a heart attack identified in the Spectrum Health study is present long before the event and could therefore be identified before a dangerous heart attack has occurred. The Spectrum Health study will lead to large prospective studies of this possibility."

Muller has been active in the pursuit of vulnerable plaques for over 20 years, first as a member of the faculty of Harvard Medical School, and more recently in his role as chief medical officer of Infraredx. Madder used an imaging system developed by Infaredx, Inc., which uses advanced plaque characterization technology, NIRS, with intravascular ultrasound, for identification of plaque structure.

The system provides an image that displays key structural elements of a blockage. At the same time, the system performs spectroscopic analysis of optical data to produce a Chemogram map that indicates the location of LCP and quantifies the lipid core deposit in the artery.

Further research is needed, said Madder. "Through an international collaboration with several other centers, further studies are currently underway and others are being planned to validate this signature and to determine if near-infrared spectroscopy can accurately predict future
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Contact: Bruce Rossman
bruce.rossman@spectrumhealth.org
616-391-3706
Spectrum Health
Source:Eurekalert

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