January 1, 2023 - Happy New Year

Progress in the field continues to accelerate... 
January 1, 2023
Dear Friends,

While 2022 brought increased uncertainty and instability in the world, the Foundation’s team continued to work diligently toward realizing our vision that focused ultrasound will improve the lives of millions of people worldwide. We have doggedly pursued our mission of accelerating the development and adoption of focused ultrasound as a global standard of care by overcoming obstacles and taking advantage of opportunities. 

Progress in the field continues to accelerate unabated, thanks in part to the Foundation’s team members, the Board, the Council, donors, and friends who have come together as an incredible force driving the field forward. We must also recognize the pioneering endeavors of the countless researchers, clinicians, industry leaders, and advocates around the world. Our combined efforts are making this vision a reality. 

This past year, we have seen remarkable growth in every aspect of focused ultrasound, and the technology has never been better positioned to impact healthcare worldwide. Focused ultrasound is in various stages of research, development, and commercialization to address more than 170 clinical indications, and there are now over 25 mechanisms of action that have been identified, signaling the versatility of this technology. 

To support this rapidly growing field, the number of laboratory, clinical research, and commercial treatment sites has followed a similar trajectory. There are now more than 60 device manufacturers in the field, and regulatory approvals and reimbursement around the world are keeping pace. All of these data – and more – are well documented in our latest comprehensive State of the Field report

As evidenced by this progress in the field, we are noticing a significant trend of focused ultrasound research making an impact at leading scientific meetings. A decade ago, the Foundation’s Symposium was one of the only major conferences that featured focused ultrasound research. Now, the technology is readily being presented at meetings around the world and published in leading medical journals, indicating that the field is not only well established but also that the technology is being integrated into many different fields of medicine. 

I am happy to report that the Foundation's programs are stronger than ever. This year we launched several new initiatives, including the Focused Ultrasound Cancer Immunotherapy Center at the University of Virginia – the world's first center dedicated to advancing a focused ultrasound and cancer immunotherapy treatment approach. We have also initiated a gene therapy program and the ACCESS FUS Scholars Program which provides educational and research opportunities to the next generation of researchers from underrepresented and underserved backgrounds. 

The momentum we saw in 2022 is encouraging, but I continue to be frustrated by how long it is taking for focused ultrasound to reach patients. Every day that goes by translates to unnecessary death, disability, and suffering for countless people.

However, my urgency should not undermine the remarkable progress that we made this year, and it is only made possible by the generous philanthropic support of our donors. On behalf of the entire focused ultrasound team, we thank you and wish you a fantastic new year. 

Be well. Be happy.

Neal F. Kassell, MD
Chairman and Founder,
Focused Ultrasound Foundation