Radiation free localization and diagnosis of sentinel lymph nodes with magnetic nano-particles

An important part of the program is a prospective clinical study on a patient group (n=100) of a commercial magnetometer system (Sentimag) that is developed to localize the sentinel lymph node in vivo in the operating theatre. To get a better insight in the way magnetic particles can be used to detect the sentinel nodes in the lymphatic system, examination of the breast including axillary lymph nodes will be performed in vivo and ex vivo on resected breast tissue in a clinical MRI system with moderate field strength (1.0/1.5T). This is combined with ex vivo high-resolution MRI on resected lymph nodes in a 14T system, accurate magnetometry with a laboratory based instrument (VSM) and classical pathology on the selected lymph nodes.

By combining of state-of-the-art clinical practice and novel experimental techniques in the clinic and the university NIM and ECTM laboratories we aim to obtain the following results:


An accurate validation for the clinical performance of a novel handheld magnetometer system in a prospective study on the case of breast cancer.


A technology analysis of existing and novel procedures to localize the sentinel lymph node in this case, including a specification for the required magnetic detection system, the usability in the operating room and the required particle size distribution.


A design for a novel non-invasive magnetic method to accurately localize and diagnose the status of a lymph node that can be applied in the operating room.

This new knowledge will enable the development of a much broader range of new magnetic instruments for clinical use.

Collaboration network

Surgery Dept., Medisch Spectrum Twente (www.mst.nl/mammacare).