Foundation News

  • Governor Jeb Bush Visits Foundation

    The Focused Ultrasound Foundation was honored to host former Florida Governor Jeb Bush on November 21 and highlight the tremendous potential of focused ultrasound and the Foundation’s role in advancing this important technology.

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  • INSERM Director Visits Foundation, Provides Research Update

    Jean-Yves Chapelon, PhD, is Research Director at INSERM’s LabTAU in Lyon, France and leads a collaborative project between INSERM (the French equivalent of the NIH) and the French FUS company EDAP TMS. He visited the Foundation to update us on the history and current status of Ablatherm technology for treatment of prostate cancer.

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  • Lockharts Honor Son by Funding Fellowship

    At the behest of Gene and Terry Lockhart, the Focused Ultrasound Foundation has established the Andrew J. Lockhart Fellowship for focused ultrasound research into solid tumors to honor their son Andrew who passed away in September 2016 after a hard-fought battle with cancer at the age of 39.

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  • Kassell Joins World Economic Forum Advisory Group

    Foundation Chairman Neal F. Kassell, MD has been invited to join the Future of Neurotechnologies and Brain Sciencecouncil, one of the networks in the Global Future Councils, a community of world-leading experts and innovators to provide bold visions for solving critical global, regional, and industry challenges. The Councils’ first meeting took place in Dubai November 13-14, 2016.

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  • Sunnybrook Centre of Excellence Accelerating Progress Through Collaboration

    The Focused Ultrasound Foundation is honored to recognize Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto as a Centre of Excellence.

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  • GBM Consortium Tests Focused Ultrasound Immunomodulation Parameters

    The Foundation’s multi-site consortium to streamline efforts and accelerate progress in using FUS to increase the body’s anti-tumor immune response has launched its first major project. Researchers at seven institutions will investigate the effects of different FUS modalities on the immune system, each using the same animal model of glioblastoma multiforme (GBM), an aggressive and difficult to treat brain tumor.

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  • FUS Immunotherapy Summit Builds on Momentum

    More than 40 experts from around the world gathered for the Focused Ultrasound and Immunotherapy Summit, held in partnership with the Cancer Research Institute on October 14. The group met to critically evaluate the current body of evidence, assess the value of ongoing work, and create a roadmap of projects to address any remaining gaps or questions.

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  • Symposium Summary & Presentation Videos Now Available

    Nearly 200 researchers presented their data at the 5th International Symposium on Focused Ultrasound in August. The Symposium is the world's leading forum for sharing the latest translational and clinical advances in focused ultrasound – a groundbreaking non-invasive therapeutic technology. Targeted to scientists, clinicians, and other stakeholders, the conference offered a multifaceted exploration of this emerging field and feature plenary sessions, panel discussions, poster presentations and technical exhibits.

    Read the event summary. 

    You can now view the video presentations and read the abstracts here.


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  • Essential Tremor Patient Visits Symposium

    Just a week after undergoing FUS for his tremor at the University of Maryland, Peter Muller visited the Symposium to meet some of the leading researchers in the field and the innovators at Insightec that developed the technology.

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  • 2016 Symposium: We Have Reached the Tipping Point

    The momentum at the Foundation’s 5th International Focused Ultrasound Symposium demonstrates the progression of the technology from a research tool toward a viable clinical treatment. From the record number of investigators attending, to the quantity and quality of clinical trials reported, to the celebration of the first FDA approvals of clinical brain and prostate systems, the meeting ushered in a new era.

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  • Focused Ultrasound Foundation Earns CEO Cancer Gold Standard Accreditation

    The CEO Roundtable on Cancer has accredited the Foundation with the CEO Cancer Gold StandardTM, recognizing our efforts to reduce the risk of cancer for our employees and covered family members.

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  • New England Journal of Medicine Publishes Tremor Results

    The prestigious New England Journal of Medicine published the pivotal study that led to the approval of Insightec’s Exablate Neuro focused ultrasound system to treat essential tremor (ET).

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  • Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe Visits Focused Ultrasound Foundation

    On Monday, August 22, Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe visited the Focused Ultrasound Foundation and met with members of the Foundation’s Team, Board, Council, and representatives from the University of Virginia Health System.

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  • The Focused Ultrasound Foundation Contributes to the Vice President’s Cancer Moonshot

    In his final State of the Union address, President Obama announced a new “moonshot” initiative aimed at making cancer a thing of the past. Vice President Biden is leading this national effort with an ultimate goal to double the rate of progress towards cancer cures, making a decade’s worth of progress in the next five years. The Foundation is highly supportive of this initiative that aligns well with our mission to bring focused ultrasound for the treatment of cancer to patients as quickly as possible.

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  • Leading French Researcher Joins Foundation as Merkin Fellow

    Starting this month, Cyril Lafon, PhD, joins the Foundation as the 2016-2017 Richard Merkin Visiting Fellow.

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  • Dr. Emily White Joins Focused Ultrasound Foundation as Director of Operations

    CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA – (July 7, 2016) – The Focused Ultrasound Foundation has recruited Emily White, MD, to serve as Director of Operations. Dr. White will lead an ongoing effort to increase efficiency and effectiveness throughout the organization.

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  • Former Virginia Tech President Charles Steger Elected to Board of Focused Ultrasound Foundation

    Charlottesville, VA, – May 19, 2016 – Former Virginia Tech President Charles Steger, PhD, has been elected to the Board of Directors of The Focused Ultrasound Foundation.

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  • CBS This Morning Features John Grisham Discussing his New Free Book about Focused Ultrasound as a Groundbreaking Medical Treatment

    Charlottesville, VA, – April 20, 2016 – Bestselling author John Grisham was featured on CBS This Morning today discussing his free book called The Tumor, a fictional account of how a real medical technology could impact the future of medicine.

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  • Dr. Tim Meakem Joins Focused Ultrasound Foundation as Chief Medical Officer

    CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA – (April 19, 2016) – The Focused Ultrasound Foundation has recruited Tim Meakem, MD, to serve as Chief Medical Officer.

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  • Neurosurgeon and Foundation Chairman Neal Kassell Appointed to National Cancer Institute’s Blue Ribbon Panel for Cancer Moonshot

    Charlottesville, VA, – April 4, 2016 – Focused Ultrasound Foundation Chairman Neal F. Kassell, MD, has been selected to serve on the National Cancer Institute’s (NCI) Blue Ribbon Panel for Vice President Joe Biden’s National Cancer Moonshot Initiative. Dr. Kassell joins a group of 28 luminaries in science and medicine who will help the NCI inform the scientific direction and goals of the Initiative.

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  • Foundation Scientists Build Collaboration in Korea

    Foundation scientists recently returned from a productive trip to Korea, where they made presentations and expanded our collaborative network. John Snell, PhD, Brain Program Technical Director and current and past Foundation fellows Dong-guk Paeng, PhD, and Jean-Francois Aubry, PhD spent a week speaking at two universities and two conferences. Dr. Paeng shared his country, national cuisine, and culture with the others.

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  • Neurosurgical Pioneer Named Honorary Symposium President

    A neurosurgeon and pioneer in using focused ultrasound for psychological disorders, Jin-woo Chang, MD, PhD, will serve as the Honorary President of the 5th International Symposium on Focused Ultrasound, to be held August 28-September 1, 2016, in Bethesda, Maryland.

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  • Focused Ultrasound Foundation Featured as Leading Philanthropy By Virginia Business

    The Focused Ultrasound Foundation is featured on the cover of the annual Generous Virginians issue of Virginia Business magazine out this June and now available online.

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  • International Businessman Ned Kelly Joins Focused Ultrasound Foundation Board

    Charlottesville, VA(May 20, 2015) – The Focused Ultrasound Foundation, an entrepreneurial, tax-exempt, 501(c)3 dedicated to improving lives by advancing a transformative non-invasive treatment technology, is pleased to welcomeEdward J. “Ned” Kelly, III to its Board of Directors. A seasoned executive in global banking, Mr. Kelly will advise the Foundation in strategic fundraising and facilitation of new engagement.

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  • Teenage Patient Captivates Audience at Foundation Event

    An event on May 11 hosted by the Foundation in Charlottesville allowed more than 150 supporters, community leaders, scientists, and others to hear about the latest research advances and meet one special patient.

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  • Suzanne LeBlang Named Chief Medical Officer

    The Foundation welcomes a leading focused ultrasound clinician to the team as Chief Medical Officer.

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  • Letter to Editor on FUS for Alzheimer’s Published

    In response to last month’s groundbreaking preclinical research on focused ultrasound improving memory in Alzheimer’s published in Science Translational Medicine, Jessica Foley, PhD, the Foundation’s Chief Scientific Officer, and Steven T. DeKosky, MD, Chair of the Foundation’s Alzheimer’s Disease Steering Committee, co-published a Letter to the Editor.

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  • 21st Century Cures Legislation: Accelerating the Rate of Cures

    Last May, members of the US House of Representatives announced the 21st Century Cures initiative to keep America at the forefront of medical innovation.

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  • Winter School on Therapeutic Ultrasound

    Focused ultrasound leaders and researchers traveled to the mountains of France March 8-13 to pass on their knowledge to students in the field.

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  • Neal Kassell Presents the Foundation’s Collaboration Model at Israel BrainTech 2015

    Joining global thought leaders and directors of major brain initiatives, Chairman Neal F. Kassell, MD, presented the Foundation’s collaborative research model at Israel BrainTech this month in Tel Aviv.

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  • International Diplomat, Wellness Advocate Visits Foundation to Discuss Opportunities in China

    On January 16, the Foundation was honored to host international diplomat and wellness advocate, General Bernard Loeffke, to begin preliminary discussions about focused ultrasound technology and the Foundation’s potential opportunities for collaboration in China.

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  • Reimbursement Update

    As follow-up to the May 2014 Reimbursement Summit on bone pain and uterine fibroids, the Foundation organized stakeholder meetings in January to strategize essential tremor insurance reimbursement and further refine the plan for uterine fibroids.

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  • Groups Collaborate To Assess Potential of FUS-Immunotherapy Combination

    On February 11th in New York, the Foundation partnered with the Cancer Research Institute to convene a one-day meeting of scientists and clinicians to discuss the current status of and future directions for focused ultrasound (FUS) research as it relates to cancer immunotherapy. 

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  • Council Member Meredith Woo to Lead Higher Education Program at the Open Society Foundations

    The Focused Ultrasound Foundation will have a new global ambassador as Council member Meredith Jung-En Woo, PhD joins the Open Society Foundations(OSF) as Director of the grant-making network’s International Higher Education Support Program.

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  • Donations Needed to Fulfill $1 Million Matching Gift from Leading Educational Trust

    The Focused Ultrasound Foundation is grateful to start 2015 with a generous donation from the William R. Kenan, Jr. Charitable Trust. The Trust has pledged a 3:1 unrestricted matching gift in the amount of $250,000. The Foundation is now seeking $750,000 in unrestricted donations to complete this gift.

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  • Publication Highlights Various Uses of Focused Ultrasound

    In its January 2015 issue, DOTmed Healthcare Business News published an article written by the Foundation's Scientific Director, Jessica Foley, PhD.

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  • FUS and the Brain on Cover of Health Management

    Focused Ultrasound and The Brain is the featured cover story of this month’s Health Management journal. Foundation Chairman Neal F. Kassell, MD, shares his thoughts on why focused ultrasound is a promising treatment option for brain conditions, which diseases might best respond to focused ultrasound, and the challenges that may block its widespread adoption.

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  • Foundation and Philips Present on Focused Ultrasound at Partnering for Cures Conference

    The Foundation’s Reimbursement Working Group was selected for an Innovator Presentation at the 2014 Partnering for Cures annual meeting.

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  • Dr. Dong-guk Paeng Joins Foundation as Merkin Fellow

    The Richard Merkin Visiting Fellowship Program will begin on January 1, 2015 with the arrival of Dong-guk Paeng, PhD from Jeju National University in Korea.

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  • HealthManagement Journal Highlights Brain Research

    In its recent cover story, HealthManagement tackled all aspects of brain research, including focused ultrasound in an interview with the Foundation’s chairman, Neal F. Kassell, MD.

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  • FUS Experts Believe Brain and Cancer Applications Have Most Potential to Improve QOL

    The Foundation conducted a survey of 150 members of the focused ultrasound community on the state of the field prior to the October 2014 Symposium.

    Respondents were asked to identify which clinical indications were most likely to improve patients’ quality of life. Neurological and oncological indications are tied for the most votes, with brain tumors, essential tremor, and pancreatic cancer being rated as the top three individual indications. Similarly, respondents were asked to rank the top three bioeffects that are most likely to have long-term therapeutic value. Thermal ablation is ranked first, followed by drug delivery and neuromodulation.

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  • Council Co-Chair Jane Batten Hosts Virginia Beach Awareness Event

    On November 3rd, Foundation Council co-chair Jane Batten and Vince Mastracco hosted a luncheon in Virginia Beach for 25 community leaders who were interested in learning about focused ultrasound and its potential to revolutionize medicine, save lives, and reduce suffering. During the program, Chairman Neal F. Kassell, MD, presented the Foundation’s history and a brief overview of the technology. A focused ultrasound patient then shared his story with the group.

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  • Elekta’s Executive Director Shares Insight, Praises the Role of the Focused Ultrasound Foundation

    Tomas Puusepp, Executive Director of the Board of Elekta and its former CEO, recently visited the Foundation and shared his experience in providing an emerging technology (the Gamma Knife) to the patients who need it. His thoughts on taking risks, competition, and overcoming barriers provide many valuable insights that apply to focused ultrasound.

    When Puusepp joined Elekta in 1988, it was a $5 million company with a staff of 22—today it has $1.5 billion in revenue and 4,000 employees. With a background in electrical engineering and physics, he advanced through the management ranks within Elekta to serve as President and CEO from 2005 through April 2014.

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  • FDA Panel Calls for More Data on Sonacare’s Prostate Treatment

    sonacareA US Food and Drug Administration advisory panel voted on October 1 not to recommend approval at this time for Sonacare Medical's Sonablate 450 focused ultrasound system for the treatment of recurrent prostate cancer.

    The panel felt the interim data of 100 patients in a 200-patient trial was insufficient to recommend approval, and they advised the company to continue their ongoing study. The experts voted that the risk of the treatment was too high for the limited efficacy demonstrated, that there is not reasonable assurance that the system is effective for this population, and that the benefits do not outweigh the risks based on the evidence presented. Sonablate did receive some positive votes for safety and efficacy, but not enough to meet the level of evidence needed to recommend approval in the United States.

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  • Symposium Exhibitors

    A global leader in therapeutic ultrasound and active in the market for more than 30 years, EDAP TMS (NASDAQ: EDAP) develops, manufactures, promotes, and distributes minimally invasive medical devices for urology using ultrasound technology for two distinct therapeutic applications: noninvasive treatment of prostate cancer, and extracorporeal electroconductive shock wave treatment of urinary stones.

    electronics and innovation logoElectronics & Innovation, Ltd.
    Electronics & Innovation Ltd. (E&I) is a world leader in providing rugged and reliable RF power amplifiers. E&I designs and manufacturers RF broadband power amplifiers, phased array systems, impedance matching and variable transformers, and custom RF solutions. In addition to our standard product lines, we are now offering custom modules and pallets – designed specifically to fulfill your OEM requirements. Operating globally and continuing to expand our technology, E&I is committed to providing RF power solutions of the highest quality, durability, and ruggedness.

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  • Global Intern Program

    JemmaDuring a Foundation Board of Directors meeting, Dr. Andrew von Eschenbach was impressed with the level and scope of projects completed by students in the Summer Internship Program and suggested that the successful endeavor should be extended worldwide. Therefore, this summer, twelve high school and undergraduate university students interested in the physical and life sciences were selected to participate in the first Global Internship Program, and each was matched with an academic researcher or industry mentor at a recognized international site.

    Seven of the twelve students who completed the requirements submitted abstracts for the 2014 Symposium and will present their work during the poster session. One project, submitted by Institute of Cancer Research intern Jemma Brown, was awarded travel support as the best student abstract of 2014.

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  • Mike Cashman Joins Foundation Development Team

    Cashman Mike_smThe Foundation has recruited Mike Cashman as Co-Director of Development. Mike joins Pamela Minetti to expand the development effort and take the Foundation’s unique venture philanthropy model to new supporters, increase the reach of our message, and create novel partnerships with like-minded organizations. The addition of this position will further the Foundation’s efforts to accelerate the development of new applications of focused ultrasound and its widespread adoption as a standard of care.

    Prior to joining the Foundation, Mike was the Commanding Officer of the University of Virginia Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps and Professor of Naval Science, teaching leadership and ethics. He recently retired as a Captain with almost 29 years of service. “I am excited to join Pamela, Neal, and the team. I have seen how life-changing this technology is, and I can envision a day when it is a commonly accepted, noninvasive way to treat patients,” Mike said. “It’s not a matter of if, it’s a matter of when it will be widely available to improve, and potentially save, countless lives.”

    Neal F. Kassell, MD, Founder and Chairman of the Focused Ultrasound Foundation added, “Mike will bring his proven ability to forge strong relationships built on trust to spread the message about focused ultrasound to those who have not heard it, especially those who have the capacity to really make a difference. He has a burning desire to help advance this technology in a tangible way and will be a great ambassador for our team.”

    Captain Cashman served as a helicopter pilot and commanded several squadrons all over the world, most notably the navy’s largest aviation wing located in Norfolk, Virginia. He has a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Maine and has earned two Master’s Degrees: one in Strategic Studies from the U.S. Naval War College and one in National Security Affairs from the Naval Postgraduate School.

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  • The Institute of Cancer Research and The Royal Marsden Celebrate Opening of Focused Ultrasound Center of Excellence in London

    The first clinical trial has begun at the new Focused Ultrasound Foundation Center of Excellence (COE) at the Institute of Cancer Research, London. This center is a public-private collaboration between the Foundation, The Institute of Cancer Research (ICR), Philips Healthcare, and The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust to create a state-of-the-art resource for clinicians and scientists to develop clinical evidence and establish best practices, treatment standards, and protocols for the use of focused ultrasound to treat cancer.

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  • Foundation Chairman Publishes Articles on Future of Focused Ultrasound

    Neal F. Kassell, MD, Chairman of the Focused Ultrasound Foundation, authored two recent articles on the future of the technology and what it might mean for the healthcare paradigm. 

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  • Richard Merkin Visiting Fellowship in Focused Ultrasound

    The receipt of a significant gift from Dr. Richard Merkin has allowed the Foundation to create a unique fellowship opportunity for international researchers. Applications are now being accepted. For information on the application process, contact Matt Eames, PhD, Director of Extramural Research, .

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  • Foundation’s Unique Partnership Showcased

    The Foundation’s chairman, Dr. Neal F. Kassell, delivered the keynote speech at the BIRD (United States-Israel Binational Industry Research & Development) Foundation’s Reception at the United States Chamber of Commerce on June 25. Addressing a room of decision makers from Washington and Israel, Kassell shared the story of focused ultrasound technology in neuroscience and next steps for essential tremor research.

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  • 40 Years of Focused Ultrasound: Pioneer Shares Wisdom with Foundation and UVA

    Focused ultrasound technology pioneer and entrepreneur Naren Sanghvi, PhD visited the University of Virginia (UVA) and the Foundation on July 8th to discuss prostate cancer treatment and the future of the field.

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  • FORTUNE Publishes Focused Ultrasound Double Feature

    FORTUNE has published two fantastic articles about the potential of focused ultrasound.  

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  • Workshop Participants Create Neuromodulation Roadmap, Set Sights on Clinical Use

    A group of 24 researchers from 14 organizations met March 3-4 in Charlottesville to inventory the current state of the field, identify important applications, and chart a course for the first clinical use of FUS–induced neuromodulation. Participants represented academia, industry, government, and the Foundation.

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  • Reimbursement Summit Attendees Create Action Plan for Fibroids and Bone Pain Palliation

    In an example of the power of collaboration, the Foundation hosted a Reimbursement Summit on May 13th in Charlottesville. The more than 20 attendees included professionals from Philips Healthcare, InSightec, EDAP-TMS, and reimbursement consulting firm ADVI. The group attained their primary objective to develop an integrated action plan to obtain U.S. reimbursement for focused ultrasound treatment of uterine fibroids and palliation of painful bone metastases.

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  • Carl Zeithaml, Dean of UVA’s McIntire School, Elected to Board of Focused Ultrasound Foundation

    CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA (May 13, 2014) – Carl Zeithaml, Dean of UVA’s McIntire School of Commerce has been elected to the Board of Directors of the Focused Ultrasound Foundation.

    “I love innovation and big, ambitious ideas that are designed to help people and make the world a significantly better place,” said Dean Zeithaml. “The efforts of the Focused Ultrasound Foundation certainly qualify on all dimensions. Based on results to date, the potential is enormous. I am very excited to lend my time and expertise and to connect the Foundation with my network to spread interest in their visionary work.”

    “We are honored to welcome Dean Zeithaml to our Board of Directors,” said Neal F. Kassell, M.D., chairman of the Focused Ultrasound Foundation. “With his expertise in healthcare and global strategic management, he will provide invaluable insight as the Foundation works to advance focused ultrasound therapies in the U.S. and around the globe.”

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  • Vanderbilt’s Grissom Receives External Research Award To Improve Brain Temperature Imaging

    Will Grissom, PhD, from the Vanderbilt University School of Engineering has been awarded the first External Research Award of 2014 for his project titled “MR Temperature Imaging Toolbox for Focused Ultrasound Neurosurgery.” This project aims to develop brain temperature imaging sequences and processing algorithms that directly address the current shortcomings of MR thermometry at each stage of therapy.

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  • Northern Virginia Event Draws Crowd of Potential Supporters

    On April 1st, more than 100 members of the medical and research community and friends gathered at the Washington Golf and Country Club in Arlington to learn about the medical advances being achieved with the help of the Foundation. Hosts Barbara and Rick Frisbie invited the group to learn about how focused ultrasound is changing the way that medicine is practiced and how our work is gaining support and attention from patients, clinicians, and others.

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  • Foundation Council Welcomes Meredith Woo and Charles F. Bryan, Jr.

    We are pleased to announce that two new members have joined The Foundation Council: the Dean of the University of Virginia’s (UVA) College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Dr. Meredith Jung-En Woo, and Dr. Charles F. Bryan, Jr., a distinguished historian and past CEO of the Virginia Historical Society (VHS).

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  • Chinese Expert in Focused Ultrasound Visits Foundation, UVA

    Lian Zhang, MD, gastroenterologist with the Clinical Center for Tumor Therapy, Second Affiliated Hospital of Chongqing University of Medical Sciences, met with Alan Matsumoto, MD, Co-Director of the UVA Focused Ultrasound Center.

    Dr. Zhang is a leading clinician in the field, having been involved with focused ultrasound for more than 10 years. Chongqing Haifu’s focused ultrasound system is currently approved in China and Europe to treat uterine fibroids, breast cancer, liver cancer, kidney cancer, soft tissue tumors, and pain control for pancreatic cancer and bone metastases. The technology is quite established for uterine fibroids, with more than 100 Chongqing Haifu systems in OB/GYN offices around China.

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  • U.S. Senator Mark Warner Visits Focused Ultrasound Center and Foundation

    Virginia Senator Mark Warner vowed that he would go back to the Capital recharged to advocate for focused ultrasound after touring the UVA Focused Ultrasound Center and the Focused Ultrasound Foundation on March 19.

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  • Workshop Identifies Multiple Opportunities for Neuromodulation

    The Focused Ultrasound Foundation organized and hosted a workshop on March 3-4 in Charlottesville, Virginia, to discuss the state of the art, current challenges, and future research directions for using focused ultrasound to induce neuromodulation – the stimulation or blocking of neuronal activity in targeted areas of the brain.

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  • Medical Device Innovator to Deliver Keynote Address at Focused Ultrasound Symposium

    March 18, 2014 – Charlottesville, VA – Frederic Moll, M.D., a serial medical device entrepreneur, will kick off the 4th International Symposium on Focused Ultrasound in October 2014 with a keynote presentation titled, “Developing a New, Disruptive Therapeutic Modality: From Laboratory Research Tool to Standard of Care.” Dr. Moll will share insights from his experience founding Intuitive Surgical, including his vision behind the technology, overcoming barriers to adoption and lessons for focused ultrasound.

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  • Foundation Council Welcomes Tony and Jonna Mendez

    The Foundation’s Council is now under increased “surveillance” with the addition of retired Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) officers Jonna and Tony Mendez. Together the couple has more than 50 years of service to the United States, and both are decorated heroes. Tony is also an author and award-winning painter; Jonna is a fine art photographer, a consultant/lecturer, and an author. ARGO, one of Tony’s autobiographical books, became an Academy Award-winning movie.

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  • New Website Is Global Resource for the Field

    An updated look and enhanced functionality are the key features of the Foundation’s new website

    • Audience-specific content. Are you a patient, a researcher, or a clinician? We now have a home page especially for you. Find the information that you are seeking quickly and easily.

    We are excited to offer the most advanced and comprehensive resource for the focused ultrasound community all in one place! Forward any page to a patient, friend, or colleague!

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  • Foundation Publishes Global Report on Focused Ultrasound – A Resource for all Stakeholders

    The Focused Ultrasound Foundation has published its January 2014 Focused Ultrasound Global Perspective report, a comprehensive overview of the state of the technology, including facts and figures on approved indications, manufacturers, research centers, and treatment sites. This report will serve as a trusted resource for academia, government, industry, and investors, enabling them to monitor progress in the field and guide decision making.

    The report is now available on our website. An update will be produced every six months, identifying significant research and commercialization trends for the technology.

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  • Parkinson's Dyskinesia Study Begins

    A major milestone in the evolution of the field of focused ultrasound has been achieved. The first treatment in a 20-patient pilot study assessing the feasibility, safety, and preliminary efficacy of MR-guided focused ultrasound for dyskinesia in Parkinson's disease was successfully performed in Korea. This groundbreaking study is being funded in partnership with the Michael J. Fox Foundation.

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  • In Memoriam: Edgar M. Bronfman, Charter Member of FUSF Council

    The Focused Ultrasound Foundation lost a dear friend, ardent supporter, and charter Council Member with the death of Edgar M. Bronfman on December 21, 2013. In addition to his philanthropic support, Mr. Bronfman generously supported the Foundation with his time and his extensive and brilliant business acumen. He will be dearly missed.

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  • Fourth Quarter Research Awards

    The Foundation’s External Research Awards Program has approved two new proposals for funding. One project is from the high-risk track, and the other is from the clinical indication track.

    The high-risk project is led by Zhen Xu, Ph.D., from the University of Michigan and will study the use of the mechanical effects of focused ultrasound to break up the blood clots that cause deep vein thrombosis. The clinical indication project is a pilot study in pediatric osteoid osteoma led by Michael Temple, M.D., at SickKids Hospital in Toronto.

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  • Foundation Featured in Philanthropy Journal

    The Philanthropy Journal, an online site that publishes news on fundraising, innovation, and technology in the philanthropic community, recently featured an article by the Foundation on our model to accelerate adoption of medical technology.

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  • Promising Results in FUS Breast Cancer Study

    Results of a study presented today at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) suggest MR-guided focused ultrasound (MRgFUS) may offer a safe, noninvasive treatment option for breast cancer.

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  • Foundation’s Patient Survey Demonstrates Impact of Fibroids and Preference for Noninvasive Treatment

    The Foundation’s patient advocacy program, Fibroid Relief, has been garnering nationwide media coverage of a newly published survey that found that uterine fibroids cause significant fear and morbidity and can compromise workplace performance. It also found that women prefer treatment options that are not invasive and protect fertility (like focused ultrasound).

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  • Ellen H. Block Joins Council

    The Foundation is pleased to announce that Ellen H. Block has joined our Council. Members of the Foundation Council serve as goodwill ambassadors, advance our message, and connect us to other people who should hear our story. Ellen is a registered occupational therapist, small business owner, and an active philanthropist from Palm Beach, Florida. She is engaged in a wide range of societal and community-related issues locally, nationally, and globally.

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  • Merkin Fellowship Position Open

    The Foundation is now seeking applicants for the Richard Merkin Visiting Fellowship in Focused Ultrasound, created by Richard Merkin, MD, to foster collaboration between the Foundation and other institutions .

    The Fellowship in Focused Ultrasound is open to any mid-career or senior scientist or clinician from industry or academia around the world to work with the technical and scientific team at the Focused Ultrasound Foundation in Charlottesville, Virginia for about 12 months. The position will foster collaboration between the Foundation, the Fellow's home institution, and other institutions and will be paid through an annualized stipend of $150,000.

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  • Experts Discuss Research Direction at Blood-Brain Barrier Workshop

    The Focused Ultrasound Foundation and the Kinetics Foundation organized a workshop in September to discuss the state of the technology, current challenges, and future research directions for using focused ultrasound to reversibly open the blood-brain barrier to allow the delivery of drugs directly to the brain for treatment of cancer, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and other central nervous system disorders.

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  • Pioneer in Focused Ultrasound Cancer Treatment Named Honorary President for 2014 Symposium

    Feng Wu, MD, PhD, has been selected as Honorary President of the 4th International Symposium on Current and Future Applications of Focused Ultrasound to be held October 12-16, 2014 in Bethesda, Maryland.

    Wu has been a steadfast champion of focused ultrasound for more than 25 years. To date, his teams in China have treated more than 50,000 tumor patients, the largest population of focused ultrasound-treated patients in the world. Now living in England, Wu is a Focused Ultrasound Consultant and Senior Clinical Scientist at Oxford University. He is a leading researcher in the field, having published more than 200 papers. In 2013, he was awarded the International Society for Therapeutic Ultrasound’s William and Francis Fry Award for his outstanding contributions to the field.

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  • FUSF Establishes Center of Excellence in London

    Focused Ultrasound Foundation, Royal Philips, The Institute of Cancer Research, and The Royal Marsden collaborate in centre to accelerate progress and establish global standards for focused ultrasound treatment  ̶  enhancing patient care around the world

    LONDON – September 5, 2013 – The Focused Ultrasound Foundation and Philips have entered into an innovative public-private collaboration with The Institute of Cancer Research, London, and The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust. The partnership will create a focal point for ultrasound therapy research at The Institute of Cancer Research (ICR) and The Royal Marsden in London under the international Focused Ultrasound Foundation Centers of Excellence Program.

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  • Focused Ultrasound Research Published in New England Journal of Medicine

    The New England Journal of Medicine published the promising results of a pilot trial on the use of transcranial MR-guided focused ultrasound to treat patients with essential tremor (ET).

    The results indicate that focused ultrasound can safely and effectively treat targeted areas deep in the brain.  The study included 15 patients with essential tremor that could not be managed by medication who underwent a completely noninvasive unilateral thalamotomy using an investigational focused ultrasound device. The study was led by W. Jeffrey Elias, MD, (shown above with the ET patients) neurosurgeon at the University of Virginia, and funded by the Focused Ultrasound Foundation.

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  • Announcing Our 2013 Research Award Recipient – Craig Meyer, PhD

    Craig H. Meyer, PhD has received a $100,000 Research Award from the Focused Ultrasound Foundation to develop a new real-time method for performing three-dimensional MR temperature mapping, a technique that could have a major impact on the safety, efficacy and procedural efficiency of focused ultrasound treatments.

    “MR temperature mapping is an integral element of MR-guided focused ultrasound surgery. However, acquisition of the MR images required for calculating a temperature map is time consuming. At present, it is not possible using conventional non-accelerated MR techniques to acquire and reconstruct 3D temperature maps in real time,” explains Meyer, an associate professor of Biomedical Engineering and Radiology at the University of Virginia.

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  • Pamela Minetti Joins Focused Ultrasound Foundation as Director of Development

    CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA (June 20, 2013) – The Focused Ultrasound Foundation has hired Pamela Minetti as Director of Development.  Prior to joining the Foundation, Ms. Minetti was a leading member of the financial services and technology practices at Boyden Global Executive Search in New York.

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  • Michael J Fox Foundation Awards Grant for Parkinson’s Study

    The Focused Ultrasound Foundation was recently awarded a $600,000 grant by The Michael J Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research to help fund a pilot study of focused ultrasound for the treatment of dyskinesia in Parkinson’s disease.  The study will investigate the feasibility, safety and preliminary effectiveness of focused ultrasound as a non-invasive method to destroy a small volume of targeted tissue in the brain to improve motor symptoms and reduce the involuntary movements (dyskinesia) faced by Parkinson’s patients.

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  • Stakeholder Groups Attend Foundation Awareness Event

    On May 6, the Focused Ultrasound Foundation hosted an awareness-building event near its headquarters in Charlottesville. Attendees included the Foundation’s Board of Directors, Council and staff as well as focused ultrasound clinicians, researchers, patients, donors and supporters.

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  • ET Patients Set and Met Goals for Their Focused Ultrasound Treatment

    The 15 patients who enrolled in the Focused Ultrasound Foundation-funded essential tremor (ET) study at the University of Virginia are true medical pioneers. Prior to their focused ultrasound treatment, most had lived with ET for decades. All had become severely disabled by it. Each believed they had run out of viable treatment options until learning about the promise and possibilities of focused ultrasound. Bravely stepping forward to join the study, each identified three outcomes they wanted to experience.

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  • Meet Robert Khayat, New Member of the Focused Ultrasound Foundation Council

    Robert C. Khayat, JD, LLM, served as the 15th Chancellor of the University of Mississippi, from 1995 until 2009. Under Khayat’s leadership, the University was named 23rd among the nation’s public universities, and was ranked in the top ten places to work in higher education. Khayat was also a professor at the University of Mississippi School of Law and President of the NCAA Foundation.

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  • Journal of Therapeutic Ultrasound Launched

    The growing field of therapeutic ultrasound welcomes its first open access journal


    Open access publisher BioMed Central is proud to announce the launch of Journal of Therapeutic Ultrasound in partnership with the Focused Ultrasound Foundation and the International Society for Therapeutic Ultrasound.

    Therapeutic ultrasound is a fast growing field and all parties involved believe that having a dedicated open access journal in this area can only speed up the development and eventual adoption of this important clinical tool by the wider medical community.

    Focused ultrasound has the potential to be an alternative or complement for radiation therapy, the means to dissolve blood clots, and a way to deliver drugs in extremely high concentrations to a precise point in the body. It has the potential to treat a variety of serious medical disorders, including cancer, uterine fibroids, essential tremor, Parkinson’s disease, epilepsy, and neuropathic pain.  

    “Focused ultrasound technology has enormous potential to improve the quality of lives for millions around the world,” noted Neal F. Kassell, M.D., Chairman and Founder of the Focused Ultrasound Foundation. “The research reported in the Journal of Therapeutic Ultrasound will be central to advancing the field and will help accelerate the progress of focused ultrasound towards clinical adoption.” 

    Journal of Therapeutic Ultrasound encompasses all aspects of therapeutic ultrasound, namely, the stimulus, inhibition, or modification of tissue function or structure via insonification. Led by Editors-in-Chief Arik Hananel, Focused Ultrasound  Foundation, USA and Robert Muratore, Quantum Now LLC, USA, with an international editorial board consisting of the best in the field of focused ultrasound, this open access, peer-reviewed, online journal focuses mainly on translational and clinical research.

    Deborah Kahn, BioMed Central’s Publishing Director said, "We’re very pleased to welcome the Focused Ultrasound Foundation and the International Society for Therapeutic Ultrasound as new publishing partners to BioMed Central, and we share their excitement in launching the Journal of Therapeutic Ultrasound within our growing list of society journals."

    The launch edition includes two research articles. One looks at the impact of vaporized nanoemulsions on ultrasound-mediated ablation. If these results can be replicated in the clinic, microbubbles could improve the efficiency of high intensity ultrasound treatment of solid tumors. An editorial on ‘The Journal of Therapeutic Ultrasound - broadening knowledge in a rapidly growing field’ by Editors-in-Chief Arik Hananel and Robert Muratore, is also featured. 

    All Article-Processing Charges (APC) for the journal are currently covered by the Focused Ultrasound Foundation.

    Media Contact
    Rebecca Fairbairn
    Public Relations Manager, BioMed Central
    Tel:  +44 (0) 20 3192 2433
    Mob: +44 (0) 7825 257423


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  • Faster Cures Blog Features Foundation's Scientific Director Jessica Foley, PhD

    Faster Cures interviewed the Focused Ultrasound Foundation's Scientific Director Jessica Foley, PhD at last year’s Celebration of Science. Want to know what Jessica envisions for future generations of scientists and researchers and the challenges they may face with today’s economic shortcomings?

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  • Medical Device Innovator Dean Kamen Joins Foundation Council

    Dean Kamen, an inventor, entrepreneur, philanthropist and advocate for science and technology, has joined the Foundation Council. As a keynote speaker during the Foundation’s 3rdInternational Symposium in October 2012, Kamen described focused ultrasound as “an amazing technology” and stressed the importance of advocacy in moving the field forward.

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  • In Memoriam: Foundation Donor and Ardent Supporter, Cornelia Keller

    The Focused Ultrasound Foundation lost one of its most dedicated and passionate supporters in January 2013 when Cornelia Keller died from the consequences of a decades-long battle with multiple brain and spinal cord tumors. Widely recognized as a human rights activist, philanthropist, conservationist, historic preservationist, loving mother and devoted friend, Neil was also the founding donor of the Foundation's Brain Program. Her particular interest was in developing focused ultrasound as a noninvasive treatment for brain tumors.

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  • Kassell Briefs Lawmakers on UVA Center of Excellence Accomplishments

    On February 1, 2013, Focused Ultrasound Foundation Chairman Neal Kassell, MD briefed members of the Allied Health Caucus, a bipartisan group of Virginia lawmakers who meet weekly to discuss health issues. Kassell opened his remarks with an overview of focused ultrasound technology and of the Focused Ultrasound Foundation. He then provided a status report for the University of Virginia (UVA) Focused Ultrasound Center of Excellence, a facility funded by a public/private partnership involving the Commonwealth of Virginia, the Foundation, UVA and device-maker InSightec Ltd.

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  • Foundation’s Research Awards Pass $3 Million Mark

    Disbursements from the Focused Ultrasound Foundation's Research Awards Program passed the $3 million mark this month with the selection of two new funding recipients. (See chart for details.)

    Since its launch in September 2007, the Research Awards program has become a major and increasingly competitive source of financial support for pioneering focused ultrasound studies. To date, the program has provided nearly $3.2 million in funding to 31 projects exploring applications ranging from uterine fibroids, pelvic disease and knee osteoarthritis to cancers of the brain, breast, head, liver, neck and prostate.

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  • In Memoriam: Focused Ultrasound Pioneer, George Holland, MD

    Colleagues in the focused ultrasound community are grieving the loss of George A. Holland, MD, a leading American interventional radiologist who was an expert in magnetic resonance imaging and minimally invasive treatment of solid organ tumors.  As Director of MRI at the Lahey Clinic in Burlington, Massachusetts, Holland helped pioneer the use of focused ultrasound in treating uterine fibroids and was the first to manually interleave treatment spots, a technique that is now a standard of care.

    At the time of his death on January 1, 2013, Holland was Director of Cardiovascular Radiology at the University of Rochester Medical Center in Rochester, New York, where he had worked since 2009. Active in professional organizations, he served as chair of the Steering Committee for the Interventional Oncologic Registry and was on the Interventional Oncology Task Force of the Society for Interventional Radiology’s research committee.

    Holland received a B.S. in neuroscience from Colgate University and earned his medical degree from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, where he also completed his residency and fellowship training.

    Written by Ellen C., McKenna

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  • Research Awards Program Funding Clinical Trial for Knee Osteoarthritis

    Motohiro Kawasaki, MD, PhD and his colleagues at Kochi Medical School in Japan have received $100,000 from the Focused Ultrasound Foundation’s Research Awards Program to study the safety and effectiveness of MR-guided focused ultrasound in alleviating pain and improving mobility for elderly patients with knee osteoarthritis (OA).

    According to Kawasaki, knee OA is one of the most common disabling arthritic conditions in the elderly. While surgery and a continuum of non-surgical treatments are available – physical therapy, medication, and injections – some patients continue to live with severe pain and disability because surgery is too risky or too frightening and because other treatments do not work for them. 

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  • Kassell Says 2012 Focused Ultrasound Symposium Had 3 Key Take-away Messages

    Dear Friends,

    By all standards, the 3rd International Symposium on Focused Ultrasound was a success. Attendees included more than 350 people from 25 countries (40% from outside the US). They came from academia, industry, the NIH and FDA and included clinicians, scientists and philanthropists.

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  • Foundation's 2012 Fundraising Total Passes $5 Million Mark

    Since January 2012, $5 million in new commitments have been contributed to the Foundation. These contributions include leadership gifts of $1 million or more from the Robertson Foundation and two anonymous donors. The total amount contributed since the Foundation's inception in 2006 is nearly $40 million.

    These funds are being invested in high-potential research projects and programs and are helping to fill the funding gap between early-stage research and commercialization. This gap, sometimes called "the valley of death," can cause life-saving ideas like focused ultrasound technology to languish.

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  • Focused Ultrasound Foundation Interview with Roel Deckers about Breast Cancer Study

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  • Interview with 2012 Young Investigator, Jonathan Kopechek, PhD

    KopechekWe followed up with Jonathan Kopechek, PhD, who attended the symposium for the first time in 2012 through the program. Kopechek presented his research titled, “Enhanced MR-guided HIFU Ablation of Rabbit VX2 Tumors In Vivo using Phase-Shift Nanoemulsions.”

    Q: It’s been just over a year since the symposium. What are you doing now? 

    A. I am currently a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. My research involves ultrasound and microbubble-targeted delivery of therapeutics agents for treatment of cancer and cardiovascular conditions. Although my current position is not specifically in FUS, it is in a closely related research area.

    Q. Describe your experience at the 2012 Symposium.
    A. I benefited from the excellent and informative presentations at the Symposium, which expanded my knowledge on FUS research and applications. However, the most important benefit was the opportunity to meet in person with many outstanding researchers in the FUS field. It was an excellent networking experience, and many connections were formed that will likely continue for the duration of my career.

    Q: How did being a Young Investigator award recipient impact your experience?
    A: Presenting a poster as a Young Investigator awardee was very helpful to the networking process. Furthermore, without the Young Investigator award, I would only have been able to attend one day and would have missed out on meeting many FUS researchers at the Symposium. As a result of the Young Investigator award, however, I was able to attend the entire Symposium.

    Q. Would you recommend others to apply for the Young Investigator award? 
    A. I would absolutely recommend applying for the Young Investigator award. The opportunity to attend the entire Symposium was important. In addition, the opportunity to present as a Young Investigator awardee at the poster session was a very beneficial experience.

    Q: Do you have any tips for researchers interested in applying for a Young Investigator award in 2014? 
    A: I would recommend focusing on a research topic that will garner as much interest as possible in the FUS research community.

    Q: Do you plan to attend the 2014 meeting? 
    A: I hope to return. It will depend on whether I can secure funding.

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  • Fundraising the Entrepreneurial Way—Howard and Fredi Stevenson Join Foundation Council

    Forbes Magazine called him a “$1 billion fund-raiser,” an apt moniker for Howard Stevenson, Sarofim-Rock Baker Professor Emeritus and former Senior Associate Dean at Harvard Business School, Director of Publishing and Chair of the board for Harvard Business Publishing Company and Vice-Provost of Harvard University.

    Having earned his MBA and Doctoral degrees at Harvard Business School, he built the school’s entrepreneurial management program, leveraging experience gained through involvement with a number of public and privately held companies and during the last 35 years in various leadership positions at Harvard.

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  • Emily McDuffie is Focused Ultrasound Foundation's New Deveopment Associate

    Emily McDuffie has joined the Focused Ultrasound Foundation as Development Associate and is supporting fundraising efforts and invitational events for donors. Prior to joining the Foundation, McDuffie spent six years in program management and development for Children, Incorporated, a non-profit child sponsorship organization. She is a 2006 graduate of Randolph-Macon College in Virginia.

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  • Jessica Foley, PhD Joins the Focused Ultrasound Foundation as Scientific Director

    Jessica Foley, PhD has joined the Focused Ultrasound Foundation as Scientific Director. She is returning to the focused ultrasound community after completing a one-year American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Science and Technology Policy Fellowship at the National Science Foundation in Washington, DC. Prior to that, she spent three years working for InSightec as Neuro Projects Manager and Clinical Marketing Manager.

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  • Renowned Clinical Experts Join Foundation's Movement Disorders Steering Committee

    Two internationally renowned clinical experts have joined the Focused Ultrasound Foundation’s Movement Disorders Steering Committee, the advisory group that is guiding focused ultrasound research related to Parkinson’s disease, essential tremor and other movement disorders.

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