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Improved Diagnostic Sensitivity for Lung Cancer Using an Automated Quantitative Cytology System and Uridine 5′-Triphosphate-Induced Sputum Specimens*

Fred L. Johnson, PhD; Bojana Turic, MD; Roger Kemp, PhD; Branko Palcic, PhD; Robert Sussman, MD, FCCP; Kirk G. Voelker, MD, FCCP; Emory Robinette, MD, FCCP
Author and Funding Information

*From Inspire Pharmaceuticals, Inc (Dr. Johnson), Durham, NC; Perceptronix Medical Inc (Drs. Turic, Kemp, and Palcic), Vancouver, BC, Canada; Pulmonary & Allergy Associates (Dr. Sussman), Springfield, NJ; Lung Associates of Sarasota (Dr. Voelker), Sarasota, FL; and Abingdon Internal Medicine (Dr. Robinette), Abingdon, VA.

Correspondence to: Fred L. Johnson, PhD, Inspire Pharmaceuticals, Inc, 4222 Emperor Blvd, Suite 200, Durham, NC 27703-8466; e-mail: fjohnson@inspirepharm.com



Chest. 2004;125(5_suppl):157S-158S. doi:10.1378/chest.125.5_suppl.157S-a
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Sputum cytology is a noninvasive means of diagnosing lung cancer, although the sensitivity has been limited, due in part to the difficulty of consistently obtaining high-quality sputum specimens. In addition, identifying malignant cells in sputum requires a high degree of expertise by experienced personnel. The use of automated high-resolution computer-assisted quantitative image cytometry (AQC) is being developed to more readily detect lung cancers from sputum specimens. Uridine 5′-triphosphate (UTP) is being developed as a novel inhaled agent for acquiring high-quality sputum specimens for diagnostic purposes. UTP activates the P2Y2 receptors on airway epithelial cells and stimulates chloride and water secretion, cilia beat frequency, and mucociliary clearance. The current study examined the potential of AQC to improve the detection sensitivity of sputum specimens, obtained with and without the use of UTP, in which cancer was not identified by conventional cytology.

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