This month’s research highlights come from the 6th International Symposium on Focused Ultrasound, held this week in Reston, Virginia. Researchers from around the world presented the latest data on focused ultrasound applications for the brain, cancer immunotherapy, liver, lung, veterinary medicine, and more. Which presentations garnered the most attention?

researchroundupBrain

"NaviFUS: A Neuronavigation-Guided Focused Ultrasound Device for Clinical Transcranial Brain Application.”
Taiwan-based NaviFUS has developed a novel focused ultrasound system guided by neuro-navigation. It features a multi-channel phased array with focal steering from a commercially available navigation system. The presentation explained the concept of neuro-navigation and shared data on the system’s design, performance, preclinical validation, and potential clinical applications.
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Cancer Immunotherapy

“Focused Ultrasound Therapy Combined with Pembrolizumab in Metastatic Breast Cancer.”
Physicians at the University of Virginia have initiated the first US clinical trial for cancer immunotherapy with focused ultrasound. Led by Dr. Patrick Dillon, the pilot study combines pembrolizumab therapy with focused ultrasound in an effort to elicit immune stimulation and antitumor effects at local ablation sites and distant non-treated sites. The presentation included preliminary data on the first five patients enrolled in the study.
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Watch the video >

Liver

“Focused Ultrasound with Ultrasound Guidance in Liver Cancer as Suitable Option for Lesions in Difficult Locations.”
Dr. Joan Vidal-Jove presented data from using high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) to treat 40 cases of primary and metastatic liver cancer at two hospitals in Barcelona (the HIFU Ablation Oncology Unit of Hospital University Mutua Terrassa and the Interventional Oncology group of Institute Khuab’s Comprehensive Tumor Center). The presentation included considerations for the role of hepatic tumor ablation in the present oncology environment.
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Lung

“Towards FUS for Lung Cancer, Which Patient Group with Primary or Secondary Lung Cancer is Preferably Accessible?”
A research group in Gera, Germany, led by Dr. Frank Wolfram has pioneered a focused ultrasound technique for treating lung cancer that is soon to be translated to the clinical setting. In anticipation of the upcoming clinical trial, the team reviewed data from 200 patients with inoperable lung tumors to determine the percentage that might be possible to access with focused ultrasound. The abstract includes additional considerations for addressing patient selection criteria.
See the abstract >
Watch the video >

Veterinary Applications

"Treating Solid Tumors and Non-healing Wounds in Veterinary Patients with Focused Ultrasound.”
The Oklahoma State University veterinary team led by Dr. Ashish Ranjan presented data from their experience treating tumors and non-healing wounds with focused ultrasound in dogs. They then compared the canine tumor types and sites with those in humans to suggest promising uses for focused ultrasound.
See the abstract >
Watch the video >

 

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