Ongoing Research Funded by DHF

New Technologies Reduce the Risk of Esophageal Cancer in Barrett’s Esophagus

2021  | Disease: Cancers of the Digestive TractEsophageal Cancer

Principal Researcher: Sri Komanduri, MD

Co-Principal Researcher: Domenico Farina | 

Principal Investigator: Sri Komanduri, MD | Co- Principal Investigator: Domenico Farina, MD

Esophageal cancer is a deadly and increasingly common disease in the United States. Up to 15 percent of patients with gastro-esophageal reflux disease (GERD) will develop Barrett’s esophagus (BE), a pre-cancerous state that can develop into esophageal cancer. While BE is highly treatable, the progression to esophageal cancer still commonly occurs due to missed detection and diagnosis of Barrett’s esophagus, which often returns despite treatment. A new technology, Wide-Area Trans-Epithelial Sampling (WATS-3D), may offer improved detection of abnormal cells (dysplasia) in Barrett’s. WATS-3D uses brush sampling to examine larger areas of the esophagus than is achieved in conventional biopsies. Preliminary studies show improved detection of cancerous changes in Barrett’s esophagus surveillance. Dr. Komanduri’s team hopes to determine if the addition of WATS-3D increases the rate of detection of recurrent Barrett’s following treatment. If so, this could be a game changer for patients, allowing for earlier re-treatment of Barrett’s and, ultimately, for the prevention of esophageal cancer.

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