January 2015 - Sonic Concepts Develops FUS Technology and More…


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Also in this issue:


$1M Matching Gift
Donor Spotlight
2016 Symposium Dates Announced
Clinical Possibilities Beyond Ablation
Woo Joins Open Society Foundations
In Memoriam: Ferenc Jolesz, MD
Job Opportunities
Focus on Your Social Life

Celsion Thermodox Meeting
External Research Award Update
2015 Meeting Schedule
Research Roundup

Company Profile: Sonic Concepts
EDAP’s Focal One Approved in Canada

FUS May Ease OCD Symptoms and more...


SIR Feb 28-Mar 5
Winter School on Therapeutic Ultrasound Mar 8-13
STM Apr 14-17
ISTU Apr 15-18
Sonic Concepts Helps Lead the Development of FUS Technology

George Keilman reviews work performed by process lab technician Vatsana Chansamphou

George Keilman is arguably one of the most successful entrepreneurs in focused ultrasound. With a lifelong passion for acoustics that led him to buy his first book on ultrasound when he was 15, we should not be surprised.

His company, Sonic Concepts, has been a world leader in developing, testing, and manufacturing focused ultrasound devices for more than 25 years. At any given time, they are overseeing 20 to 30 development projects for academic research laboratories, start-ups, and established commercial companies from around the globe.

Mr. Keilman recently visited the Foundation to talk about the latest developments in the technology, the state of the field, and the future of the industry. Our interview with him begins here and continues with a company profile in the Industry News section.

Q. How did you get started in focused ultrasound?
A. I studied ultrasound while in graduate school for electrical engineering at the University of Washington. Early in my career I worked in diagnostic ultrasound, which evolved over time into therapeutic ultrasound, and eventually focused ultrasound. Sonic Concepts was born in 1989 as a consulting business doing transducer development, and we quickly evolved into prototyping, and eventually manufacturing of devices. Virtually everything we do has an ultrasound component to it – from small ultrasound catheters to large focused ultrasound devices.

Q. Where do you think the industry is heading?
A. The potential for focused ultrasound is great...



Give to help catalyze additional investment from industry, government, and other philanthropies to carry the technology forward.

Donations Needed to Fulfill $1 Million Matching Gift from Leading Educational Trust

The Focused Ultrasound Foundation is grateful to start 2015 with a generous donation from the William R. Kenan, Jr. Charitable Trust. The Trust has pledged a 3:1 unrestricted matching gift in the amount of $250,000. The Foundation is now seeking $750,000 in unrestricted donations to complete this gift.

The Trust was founded by William R. Kenan, Jr., a leading industrialist and champion of innovation, for the principle purpose of supporting education.“The Focused Ultrasound Foundation is a pioneering philanthropy with the potential to revolutionize the medical landscape,” said the Kenan Charitable Trust’s Executive Director. “We hope that this matching gift will inspire additional donations, and that it will help to accelerate access to new treatment options for patients around the world.”

By giving today, you can multiply your impact. Your donation will help ensure that the Kenan Charitable Trust’s grant is matched. GIVE NOW >



Sentara Healthcare CEO David Bernd






Donor Spotlight

“I am pleased to join the Focused Ultrasound Foundation’s circle of advocates and donors. It is rewarding to know that my contributions will advance the Foundation’s revolutionary work, fostering collaboration between stakeholders in the medical community, creating knowledge through cutting-edge research, and cultivating the next generation of clinicians and scientists.” – David L. Bernd, CEO of Sentara Healthcare

The Focused Ultrasound Foundation is grateful for the support of generous donors like David L. Bernd who have an outsized impact on the Foundation’s work. A list of donors from the 4th quarter of 2014 is available here, and a list of donors of all time is available on our website. Thank you for your active participation and continued generosity.


Save the Date for Symposium 2016

On the heels of a fantastic meeting last October, we are excited to announce the 5th International Symposium on Focused Ultrasound will take place August 28-September 1, 2016 at the North Bethesda Marriott Hotel and Conference Center in Bethesda, Maryland. Mark your calendar now, and join us to hear the latest in focused ultrasound preclinical, translational, and clinical research from leading experts in the field.


Focused Ultrasound: The Clinical Possibilities Beyond Ablation

The January issue of DOTmed’s HealthCareBusiness news includes a four-page synopsis on the variety of bioeffects produced and the medical disorders that may be treated with focused ultrasound. Written by the Foundation’s Scientific Director, Jessica Foley, PhD, the piece highlights opening the blood-brain barrier, activating and mapping the brain, exciting the immune system to fight cancer, and localizing the delivery of chemotherapy. With a readership of leading healthcare executives, Dr. Foley’s article also comments on how focused ultrasound technology fits into the new model of optimizing population health while minimizing costs.



Meredith Jung-En Woo, PhD

Council Member Meredith Woo to Lead Higher Education Program at the Open Society Foundations

The Focused Ultrasound Foundation will have a new global ambassador as Council member Meredith Jung-En Woo, PhD joins the Open Society Foundations (OSF) as Director of the grant-making network’s International Higher Education Support Program. She will be based in London overseeing the program’s efforts to support higher education and promote open society in countries transitioning to democracy, particularly in Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East.

OSF works within local communities in more than 100 countries to build vibrant and tolerant democracies whose governments are accountable to their citizens. It was founded by George Soros, who remains deeply engaged.





Ferenc A. Jolesz, MD

Memorial Service Friday, February 6th

In Memoriam – Ferenc A. Jolesz, MD

Earlier this month, we announced the sudden and unexpected passing of focused ultrasound pioneer Ferenc A. Jolesz, MD, Professor of Radiology at Harvard Medical School and the Vice Chair of Radiology Research and Director of the Image Guided Therapy Program at Brigham and Women's Hospital. Dr. Jolesz was a mentor, friend, and world class visionary whose passion for pushing surgery into the 21st century led him from developing image-guided minimally invasive therapy to engineering focused ultrasound as a completely non-invasive approach.

A memorial service will be held on Friday, February 6th in Boston.




Job Opportunities – New on the Foundation Website

As part of our mission to serve as a hub within the focused ultrasound community, we have now expanded the Job Opportunities section of our website to include position announcements and job seekers from around the world.

Job Seekers: Check this page for new postings--or post your resume if you are actively seeking employment.

Companies/Universities/Clinicians: To post a listing, email communications@fusfoundation.org.



Focus on Your Social Life in 2015

Did you know that we’ve had more than 300 views in the past month on the Foundation’s YouTube Channel? That we are nearing our 1,000th tweet on Twitter? And that we have more than 1,000 followers on Facebook? Join the focused ultrasound conversation!

Click on the icons to connect!

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"There is great potential to treat advanced cancer more precisely and with limited systemic toxicity."
– Jessica Foley, PhD, FUSF’s Scientific Director



Celsion Focused Ultrasound Symposium Highlights Cancer Studies

On Friday, January 16th, Celsion Corporation hosted a symposium in New York to highlight cutting edge translational research involving ThermoDox (a thermally sensitive liposomal chemotherapeutic product) in combination with high intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU). The meeting brought together 20 international scientists and clinicians who are leading the development of this combination approach (HIFU + ThermoDox) toward clinical application for treatment of a variety of cancers. Current preclinical studies are ongoing for tumors of the breast, pancreas, liver, brain, and soft tissues. Phase 1 clinical trials have been initiated for HIFU-ThermoDox treatment of liver (Oxford) tumors. A phase 1 clinical trial in breast tumors (Utrecht) is also planned.

ThermoDox is a liposomal product that encapsulates doxorubicin as it circulates throughout the body. The liposome is thermally sensitive and will release its encapsulated doxorubicin payload when heated to temperatures above 40 degrees. Therefore, focal heating at the tumor site with HIFU will enable targeted, local release of high concentrations of doxorubicin within the tumor.


Paul Dayton, PhD



External Research Award Update

Nanodroplets Enhance Focused Ultrasound Ablation

Last August, we profiled external award recipient Paul Dayton, PhD and the nanodroplet research being conducted by his team at the Joint Department of Biomedical Engineering at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill and North Carolina State University, Raleigh. The project is now complete, and several scientific publications document this important work. The group found that the use of nanodroplets could potentially reduce focused ultrasound procedure times as much as five-fold by more safely and quickly ablating a larger region of tissue.

"This work is an example of how basic research can demonstrate a clear clinical benefit. Shortening focused ultrasound treatment times is important to patients, physicians, and treatment facilities."
– Matt Eames, PhD, FUSF's Director of Extramural Research






Important Meetings for Your 2015 Calendar

As we begin the new year, we encourage you to mark your calendars for these important meetings. You’ll have the opportunity to share the latest focused ultrasound research, collaborate with leaders in the field, and brainstorm new ideas.
  • Winter School on Therapeutic Ultrasound: March 8-13, 2015
  • 15th International Symposium on Therapeutic Ultrasound (ISTU): April 15-18, 2015
  • 3rd European Symposium on Focused Ultrasound Therapy: October 15-16, 2015





Research Roundup

Could the pretreatment MRI be the key to determining which patients with fibroids are best suited for focused ultrasound treatment? Results from 252 patients treated at one center are presented in: MRI Predictors of Clinical Success in MR-guided Focused Ultrasound (MRgFUS) Treatments of Uterine Fibroids: Results from a Single Centre.


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Company Profile: Sonic Concepts

During the recent visit from Sonic Concepts’ Founder and President, George Keilman, we asked about the creation, technological advancements, and new applications of the company. Founded in 1989 and based in Bothell, Washington, Sonic Concepts designs and manufactures ultrasonic transducers and systems. They currently employ 14 people, and their intellectual property portfolio is approaching 30 US patents. Besides the single element and array transducers used for focused ultrasound, their products include imaging probes, hydrophones, software, and focused ultrasound system accessories like water degassing systems, radiation force balance equipment, watt meters, coupling cones, and more.






EDAP’s Focal One Device Approved by Health Canada

We congratulate EDAP-TMS on their Focal One device being approved by Health Canada, enabling the company to market the device for the treatment of prostate cancer. European approval was granted in 2013. EDAP's Chief Executive Officer, Marc Oczachowski, commented that this important milestone "is the first regulatory approval for Focal One in the Americas and a key step forward in our overall regulatory strategy as we work to expand Focal One's global footprint and bring our innovative cancer therapies to a growing number of patients worldwide."

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Sales Agreement and First Clinical Publication for Theraclion's Echopulse System on Medical Physics Web 1/15/15

Focused Ultrasound May Ease OCD Symptoms on PsychCentral.com 1/2/15

An Ultrasonic Scalpel for Brain Surgery on IEEE Spectrum 12/26/14

Five UVA Moments Worth Remembering from 2014 on DCInno.streetwise.com 12/20/14

Universities Push Harder Into Realm of Startups (HistoSonics) on the Wall Street Journal.com 12/17/14

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Deadline: January 27th, 2015—The Society for Thermal Medicine (STM) 32nd Annual Meeting to be held April 14-17, 2015 in Orlando, FL


February 28-March 5, 2015 Society of Interventional Radiology (SIR) Annual Scientific Meeting, Atlanta, GA

March 8-13, 2015 Winter School on Therapeutic Ultrasound, Les Houches, France

April 14-17, 2015 The Society for Thermal Medicine (STM) 32nd Annual Meeting, Orlando, FL

April 15-18, 2015 The International Society for Therapeutic Ultrasound (ISTU) 15th International Symposium for Therapeutic Ultrasound, Utrecht, The Netherlands

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