October 2010: Final Symposium Program Announced and more...


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Dear Subscriber,

This issue highlights final details of the 2nd International Symposium on MR-guided Focused Ultrasound. Scheduled to convene October 17, the two and a half-day symposium will be the largest and most comprehensive educational program ever organized by the Focused Ultrasound Surgery Foundation.

A unique gathering point for the MR-guided focused ultrasound community, the symposium will spotlight key advances in patient treatments as well as ground-breaking research. It will provide ample opportunity for attendees to share information, to develop and expand collaborations, and to identify new research possibilities.

On the clinical side, symposium presenters will discuss the latest patient data for investigational treatments; these range from prostate, breast and liver cancer to functional brain disorders and to facet rhizotomy for lower back pain. On the research side, presenters will report ground-breaking results for blood-brain barrier disruption, ischemic stroke, stem cell activation, and Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH) and for pancreatic and liver cancer. Other important developments to be covered include bone tumors, uterine fibroids, targeted drug delivery and various aspects of MR-guided focused ultrasound technology.

By all standards, the symposium promises to be a vital and valuable meeting for the entire field of MR-guided focused ultrasound. Look for full coverage on the Foundation website and in future issues of this newsletter.

Final symposium program posted online
Symposium Logo

Final program details for the 2nd International Symposium on MR-guided Focused Ultrasound are now posted on the Focused Ultrasound Surgery Foundation website.

In all, the program will feature 70 oral presentations. Topics will include bone, breast, brain, liver and prostate cancer, uterine fibroids, back and neck pain and targeted drug delivery. Other sessions will focus on technology, including micro-FUS and bio-effects; vendor profiles; and accelerating development and adoption of FUS applications.

The poster session on Tuesday, October 19 will include 62 presentations. A highlight of that program will be presentations by the Foundation's ten 2010 Young Investigator Award recipients.

To view the final symposium program, click here.

To view the Tuesday night poster session, click here.

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FDA lab director, Steven Pollack, Ph.D., will be special lecturer

The Foundation is honored to announce that Steven Pollack, Ph.D., director of the Office of Science and Engineering Laboratories (OSEL) at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, will present a special symposium lecture at 10 a.m. on Monday, October 18.

OSEL is the laboratory of the Center for Devices and Radiological Health (CDRH). It supports the scientific basis for FDA regulatory decision-making and develops independent information for regulatory and other public health activities of CDRH.

Researchers at OSEL are involved in mission-oriented science activities, including:

  • product testing and the development of reliable standardized test methods for CDRH and industry use;
  • anticipatory scientific investigations on emerging technologies;
  • contributing laboratory data to national and international standards used in CDRH decision-making;
  • maintaining laboratory collaborations and relationships with scientific researchers in academia and other Federal laboratories.

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Discussion groups will address topics requested by FUS community

Symposium attendees will soon receive emails inviting them to sign up for lunchtime discussion groups exploring four "hot topics" requested by members of the focused ultrasound community. Non-moderated and free-flowing, these hour-long group discussions will give participants a chance to share lunch while posing questions, exchanging information, building relationships and identifying new collaborative opportunities.

The schedule is:

Monday, October 18 (12:30-13:30)

Session A: Experimental Models and Micro-FUS - Models for pre-clinical studies of MR-guided focused ultrasound will be this group's focal point. Discussion is expected to pick up where the Monday morning session on micro-FUS systems leaves off. Appropriate disease models will also be addressed.

Session B: Reimbursement - Expanding reimbursement is a major challenge for the MR-guided focused ultrasound community. This lunchtime group will explore issues and solutions related to private payer reimbursement in the U.S. and talk about successful models of acceptance in Europe. Discussion will continue at the symposium's Accelerating Development & Adoption session on Wednesday, October 20.

Tuesday, October 19 (12:30-13:30)

Session A: Brain - A lively discussion is anticipated about MR-guided focused ultrasound applications in the brain. This group offers a great opportunity to continue conversations begun during the symposium's Brain Applications session on Monday.

Session B: Prostate - Scheduled to meet just before Tuesday afternoon's session on Prostate Applications, this group is open to everyone interested in prostate cancer and BPH, prevalent conditions that could be the next major clinical uses for MR-guided focused ultrasound.

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Foundation announces 2010 Young Investigator Award recipients

Ten early career scientists have received the Foundation's 2010 Young Investigator Awards and will present their work during the October 19 poster session.

These awards were established to encourage research in MR-guided focused ultrasound by graduate students, research and clinical fellows and junior faculty members. Each award provides free symposium registration and up to $1,000 in reimbursement for travel and lodging expenses.

2010 recipients are:

Esther Bouwsma, M.D.
Mayo Clinic, Department of Reproductive Endocrinology, Rochester, MN, USA

Caitlin Burke

University of Virginia, Biomedical Engineering, Charlottesville, VA, USA

Navid Farr
University of Washington, Department of Bioengineering, Seattle, WA, USA

Ronit Machtinger, M.D.
Brigham and Women's Hospital/Harvard Medical School, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Boston, MA, USA

Jonathon Pagan, M.S.
University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Radiation Oncology, Little Rock, AR, USA

Allison Payne, Ph.D.
University of Utah, Mechanical Engineering, Salt Lake City, UT, USA

Nick Todd, Ph.D.
University of Utah, Utah Center for Advanced Imaging Research, Salt Lake City, UT, USA

Urvi Vyas
University of Utah, Bioengineering, Salt Lake City, UT, USA

Marianne Voogt, M.D.
University Medical Center Utrecht, Department of Radiology, Utrecht, Netherlands

Katherine Watson
University of California, Davis, Biomedical Engineering, Davis, CA, USA

Click here for Young Investigators' abstract titles

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Mayo Clinic uterine fibroid survey set for symposium

Symposium attendees involved in MR-guided focused ultrasound treatments for uterine fibroids will have an opportunity to participate in an important Mayo Clinic study.

The study, which represents a follow-up to clinician responses gathered in 2008 at the 1st International Symposium on MR-guided Focused Ultrasound, requires completion of two brief questionnaires. The first questionnaire is now posted online and must be completed prior to the October 20 symposium session on Uterine Fibroids and Fertility. Click here to participate.

The second questionnaire is a hardcopy form that will be handed out and collected after the October 20 session.

Eva Bouwsma, M.D., the research fellow coordinating the study, says the survey responses will increase understanding of clinical experience and of the factors that currently limit the use of MR-guided focused ultrasound to treat uterine fibroids. Survey participation, she adds, is voluntary and completely confidential.

Approved by the Mayo Clinic IRB (#10-006304), this year's study is being led by Gina K. Hesley, M.D.All questions can be emailed to Dr. Bouwsma at the Mayo Clinic Center for Uterine Fibroids.

Click here for 2008 survey highlights

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Exhibit Hall will open Monday, Oct. 18

Symposium sponsors will exhibit their products and services throughout the conference. From Monday morning until Tuesday evening, attendees can visit their displays in the Washingtonian Ballroom at the Westfields Marriott. On Wednesday, the exhibits will move to the Upper Promenade area.

Exhibiting sponsors are:
Fibroid Relief
Focused Ultrasound Surgery Foundation
Philips Healthcare

Non-Exhibiting sponsors are: Elekta, IGT and Varian

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