News Flash: First For Metastatic Brain Tumor


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Focused Ultrasound Foundation
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OCTOBER 7, 2014
Accelerating Brain Tumor Research

The Foundation has a comprehensive strategy in place to fast track the development of focused ultrasound to treat brain tumors. We have organized and funded three ongoing clinical trials using focused ultrasound:

First-line treatment for patients with metastatic brain tumors
- Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, Toronto
Treatment for recurrent metastatic brain tumors
- The University of Virginia, Charlottesville
- Swedish Neurological Institute, Seattle
- Brigham and Women’s, Boston
Treatment for metastatic brain tumors and gliomas
- University Children’s Hospital, Zurich
Delivery of chemotherapy directly to glioblastomas by opening the blood-brain barrier
- Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, Toronto

In addition to clinical trials, the Foundation also convenes experts and funds pre-clinical and technical research to overcome challenges in treating benign and malignant brain tumors.


World’s First Use of Focused Ultrasound in a Metastatic Brain Tumor




We are pleased to share that another major milestone has been achieved in the evolution of focused ultrasound for treating disorders of the brain.

For the first time, a patient with a metastatic brain tumor underwent experimental focused ultrasound therapy. The procedure was performed by Stephen Monteith, MD, and Charles Cobbs, MD, at the Swedish Neuroscience Institute in Seattle using InSightec's ExAblate system.

This was the first of six patients in a US-based pilot clinical trial to determine feasibility and safety of focused ultrasound in treating metastatic brain tumors.  The study, supported by the Focused Ultrasound Foundation's Cornelia Flagg Keller Memorial Fund, is a companion to other Foundation-supported pilot clinical trials of glioblastomas and metastatic brain tumors in Canada and Switzerland.

The goal of these studies is to develop a new approach for patients with brain tumors that is better than best current therapy and fulfills an unmet critical medical need that will improve quality of life and longevity while decreasing cost. This case represents a small but important step in the path to reach this goal.

If the results of these pilot studies are encouraging, they will lead to larger clinical trials to determine safety and efficacy which could ultimately lead to focused ultrasound as a new treatment alternative or complement to surgery, radiation and chemotherapy for certain patients with a wide variety of brain tumors.

We look forward to keeping you informed of major milestones in the field.

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