Competitive Structure of Preclinical Optical Imaging Market

Published: 4 Jun 2008

By Santhosh Kumar. R, Life Sciences IT, Research Analyst
Email: santhosh.ramaraj@frost.com

It is gradual technological advancements that are ameliorating the drug development phase, which till date is experiencing immense cost and time pressures. Optical Imaging is one non–invasive molecular imaging technology which is used for imaging animals in the preclinical phase and is playing a crucial role in this amelioration. These are dedicated in-vivo imaging systems designed to image animals for studying the drug interaction with the target molecule at the functional and molecular level. To be specific, they are used in understanding the drug's pharmacokinetic properties, disease procession, and also in biomarker development. This technology has alleviated from the traditional practice of sacrificing animals which was considered costly and time consuming for pharmaceutical companies.

The different modalities used in molecular imaging of animals do not emulate one another rather they complement each other for a more detailed study. Optical imaging is in two forms, Fluorescence and the Bioluminescence. Fluorescence units require an external light which monitors light activated dyes that are chemically attached to a molecule or protein. Bioluminescence units monitor specific proteins leveraging internal light, the luminescence of luciferase gene which is transplanted in to animals. The measurement of the probes is captured by charged couple detector (CCD) cameras that are attached in the system.

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