Brain Program

The Foundation considers the brain to be the vanguard target for focused ultrasound.  Given the challenges of accessing the brain and the high cost, complications and limitations of some current approaches, we believe that this noninvasive technology has the potential to revolutionize the treatment of many brain disorders. It has the potential to:   

  • transform treatment by gaining access deep within the brain without harming healthy tissue;
  • ablate targeted tissue without exposing the brain to the effects of ionizing radiation;
  • enable the reversible opening of the blood-brain barrier to deliver therapeutic agents to targeted diseased areas;
  • enable structural changes in agents that accumulate preferentially in tumors to become locally toxic (sonodynamic therapy);
  • noninvasively dissolve blood clots that cause stroke; and
  • noninvasively and reversibly modulate neural activity.

To date, the Foundation has held more than 30 workshops that have succeeded in defining clear research objectives for clinical, preclinical, and technical investigation for focused ultrasound in the brain. Clinical studies have been launched investigating the treatment of a range of disorders, including essential tremor, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, obsessive-compulsive disorder, epilepsy, and brain cancer. The Foundation’s technical research program involves a vibrant community of experts around the world to solve the challenges of applying focused ultrasound to an increasing array of high-impact, clinically unmet needs.

We believe that focused ultrasound technology has the potential to make the practice of neurosurgery safer, faster, more effective, and less costly. What were once major brain surgeries, will one day soon become noninvasive ambulatory outpatient procedures.

Participating in Clinical Trials

Patient participation in clinical trials is critical to advancing focused ultrasound treatment for brain disorders.  Research for Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, epilepsy, obsessive-compulsive disorder, neuropathic pain, and brain cancer is being planned or conducted with patients at  leading centers. To find out more about focused ultrasound for a specific disease or clinical trials, visit the appropriate Diseases and Conditions page.

Apply for Funding

Learn more about the Foundation’s funding opportunities and how to apply on the For Researchers section of our website.