Immunotherapy has radically altered the prognostic outlook for patients with relatively immunogenic cancers like melanoma and lung cancer; however, cancers that are less conspicuous to the immune system have been obstinately resistant to immunotherapy. Histotripsy uses high-intensity, focused ultrasound pulses to generate inertial cavitation to cause cellular disruption, liquefying the target tumor to acellular debris. Preliminary results show that histotripsy stimulates local, regional, and systemic immune responses; histotripsy stimulates abscopal effects in the immunosuppressive murine hepatocellular model. We hypothesize that histotripsy can break the ability of cancers to avoid immune detection, sensitizing previously resistant cancers to immunotherapy.
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