The American Association of Physicists in Medicine (AAPM) held their 61st Annual Meeting and Exhibition July 14-18 in San Antonio, Texas, with the theme of “Building Bridges, Cultivating Safety, Growing Value.” Katherine Ferrara, PhD, presented the Carson-Zagzebski Distinguished Lectureship on Medical Ultrasound as part of a special 3-day program on ultrasound to highlight advances in ultrasound-guided radiation therapy, therapeutic ultrasound, and diagnostic ultrasound.

AAPM2019The special ultrasound program was organized by Chris Diederich, PhD, Professor of Radiation Oncology at the University of California, San Francisco, and Tian Liu, PhD, Associate Professor of Radiation Oncology at Emory University. Dr. Ferrara’s distinguished lecture centered on emerging opportunities to synergize immunotherapy and gene therapy. She described four mechanisms by which focal ablation synergizes with immunotherapy to create in situ vaccination.

“For me, a highlight of this meeting was the way that it showed the importance of the relationship between focused ultrasound and radiotherapy,” said Cyril Lafon, PhD, the Foundation’s recent Merkin Fellow. “That session bridged the focused ultrasound community to the medical physicists by showing all of the ways that therapeutic ultrasound can enhance radiotherapy. It’s a growing field.”

Besides the special session, three focused ultrasound abstracts were selected for presentation, including two from the Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia and one from Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center in Houston.

The content for the special program includes links to the handouts. Each session is listed below, and can be further accessed via the AAPM online abstract system.

TU-AB-303-0 Novel Aspects and Clinical Implementation of Focused Ultrasound*

TU-E-303-0 Carson-Zagzebski Distinguished Lectureship On Medical Ultrasound*

TU-HI-303-0 Advances in Image-Guided Focused Ultrasound Applications*

TU-HI-303-5 Shear Wave Propagation Speed Measured Using Magnetic Resonance Acoustic Radiation Force Imaging (MR-ARFI) Before and After MR Guided Focused Ultrasound Surgery (MRgFUS): Preliminary Results in An in Vivo Skeletal Muscle Model

TU-HI-303-6 Investigation of Enhancement of Gene Therapy with MR-Guided Focused Ultrasound (MRgHIFU)

TU-L-303-0 Focused Ultrasound in Radiation Oncology*

SU-I300-GePD-F5-5 Treatment Assessment Using CT/PET and MRI for Therapies of Different Mechanisms of Action

*Part of the Special 3-Day Program on Ultrasound

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