QUEL Imaging begins $2 million Phase II SBIR contract with NCI

Ethan LaRochelle, PhD (CEO, Primary Investigator) and Alberto Ruiz, PhD (CTO, Co-Investigator)

Vermont Business Magazine QUEL Imaging, a small business focusing on developing innovative specialty tools to support the rapidly growing field of fluorescence guided surgery (FGS) in White River Junction, has announced it has received a Phase II SBIR contract from the National Cancer Institute (NCI) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) (Contract 75N91023C00052). 

This highly competitive award provides nearly $2 million in funding over two years to develop Biomimicking optical phantoms for advancing FGS. Phantoms are a widely used tool in the field of biomedical imaging, which help demonstrate and test system capabilities. The phantoms developed by QUEL Imaging are highly customizable and help imaging system developers and pharmaceutical companies accelerate their research and development cycles, while reducing costs during their pathway to regulatory approval. 

These efforts will be led by co-founders Ethan LaRochelle, PhD (CEO, Primary Investigator) and Alberto Ruiz, PhD (CTO, Co-Investigator). 

Since opening their White River Junction location in November 2020, QUEL Imaging has developed a customer base of over forty companies located across a dozen countries. QUEL Imaging will use the current SBIR funding to: 

• Design and manufacture bio-mimicking phantoms to demonstrate fluorescence visualization of tumor resections and margin evaluations; 

• Develop tools to advance dynamic perfusion and vascular flow assessment; and 

• Expand engagement with cross-disciplinary stakeholders through improved access to computational tools and user-group meetings 

This work will be supported by a sub-award to Thayer School of Engineering professor, Kimberley Samkoe, PhD (Co-Investigator) at the Dartmouth Center for Imaging Medicine. 

About QUEL Imaging QUEL (Pronunciation: /kɛl/) Imaging, LLC was established in 2019 by a student-faculty team from the Center for Imaging Medicine, part of the Thayer School of Engineering at Dartmouth. This team provides world-leading expertise in biomedical optics and has a unique knowledgebase and growing portfolio of innovative tools to advance the clinical translation of fluorescence imaging. QUEL Imaging was previously awarded SBIR Phase I and II grants by the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB) to develop fluorescence reference reference targets, and a SBIR Phase I contract by the National Cancer Institute to develop biomimicking optical phantoms. The company’s primary office and manufacturing space are in White River Junction, Vermont. 1 of 1 www.QUELimaging.com

Source: White River Junction, VT, September 2023 – QUEL Imaging