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In the News

Imatron EBT Coronary Artery Scan Detects Atherosclerosis in Apparently Healthy Subjects With No Standard Cardiovascular Risk Factors.

SO. SAN FRANCISCO, Calif.--(BW HealthWire)--July 27, 2000-- Imatron Inc. (Nasdaq:IMAT - news) today announced that the American Heart Association highlighted a publication in its July 25, 2000 issue of Circulation, validating the accuracy of Imatron's EBT scanner in the prediction of heart disease. This important research finding clearly demonstrates significantly better test specificity (the ability to produce a normal result in those persons without cardiac disease) for the EBT coronary artery scan for calcification than had previously been thought.

The study, authored by Larry Bielak, MD, and colleagues in the Department of Epidemiology at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Michigan, included 213 patients at high risk, with symptoms of heart disease, who underwent both coronary angiography and the EBT coronary artery scan, together with 765 asymptomatic research subjects who had only the EBT coronary artery scan. All clinical studies were performed at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota and the project was supported by a grant from the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland.

The paper, entitled, ``Probabilistic Model for Prediction of Angiographically Defined Obstructive Coronary Artery Disease Using Electron Beam Computed Tomography Calcium Score Strata,'' shows that EBT coronary artery calcium scores are predictive of coronary artery disease (CAD) in asymptomatic patients as well as those with symptoms. By eliminating a source of bias commonly present in such research studies, the investigators demonstrated that the specificity of the EBT coronary artery scan for the determination of obstructive CAD was 72.4%, significantly better than the approximately 50% reported previously. EBT coronary artery scan sensitivity, the ability to correctly detect the presence of obstructive disease, was a remarkable 97%. According to senior author Dr. Patricia A. Peyser, there was ``strong evidence'' from calcium scores in patients of either sex as to the presence or absence of obstructive CAD. The authors further stated that results of the EBT coronary artery scan should be combined with everything else that physicians already know about their patients to develop a comprehensive CAD diagnosis and treatment strategy. Moreover, they believe that EBT is ``useful for monitoring the progression of atherosclerosis and for identifying patients who need aggressive treatment to lower risk factors.''

Imatron's CEO, S. Lewis Meyer, commented, ``Coming on the heels of the recent Expert Consensus Statement from the ACC and AHA, which questioned the specificity of the Imatron EBT coronary artery scan and its value in measuring progression of coronary artery disease, these new and important results go a long way toward establishing the EBT coronary artery scan as the new gold standard for assessment of coronary atherosclerosis in intermediate risk subjects. These results, from the top researchers in the fields of epidemiology and cardiology, demonstrate levels sensitivity and specificity for the EBT coronary artery scan that are clearly superior to those of any other diagnostic test for CAD, even those which are more expensive and invasive than the EBT coronary artery scan. These and other similar research results are now being accepted and even embraced by the cardiology community at large. This medical acceptance of the power and significance of the EBT coronary artery scan is now driving Imatron sales and establishing EBT as a critical technology in the diagnosis and treatment of heart disease.''

Imatron, Inc. is primarily engaged in designing, manufacturing, marketing, and supporting high performance EBT scanners based on the Company's proprietary electron beam tomography (EBT) technology. Imatron's EBT scanner is now in use at more than 120 major medical centers around the world, including the Mayo Clinic, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Abbott-Northwestern Hospital, Mount Sinai Medical Center, University of Iowa, National Institutes of Health, UCLA Medical Center, Stanford University, HeartScan Imaging, Cooper Clinic, HealthScan of La Jolla, LifeScore of San Diego, Vital Imaging Diagnostic Clinic, University of Illinois, Arizona Heart Institute, Landeskrankenhaus Graz in Graz, Austria, Daniel den Hoed Klinik in Rotterdam, Netherlands, Cardiology Research Centre in Moscow, Russia, FAU Erlangen-Nurnberg in Erlangen, Germany, Zentralklinik Bad Berka in Bad Berka, Germany and Beijing Hospital in China.

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