- In September, the Foundation and the Cancer Research Institute hosted the fourth workshop to explore focused ultrasound and cancer immunotherapy.
- The presentations and discussion have been summarized in a white paper.
- The video recordings are also available on YouTube.
This meeting convened 85 leaders in the field, including focused ultrasound experts, oncologists, immunologists, and representatives from the National Institutes of Health, the US Food and Drug Administration, and other vital nonprofit organizations.
“A primary goal of the workshop was to identify current challenges as well as potential future research directions for focused ultrasound and immune-based cancer treatments,” said the Foundation’s chief scientific officer, Jessica Foley, PhD. “We also discussed ways that the Foundation and CRI could support future projects in this space. CRI has become an invaluable partner for the Foundation, and we are eager to see where this field leads in the coming years.”
The community agreed on several key take-aways and major goals moving forward:
- The Foundation, in collaboration with CRI and the Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy (PICI), will work to develop central data analysis and storage hubs to promote cross-study comparisons and communication within the community.
- Attendees supported the idea of hypothesis-driven study design on both the preclinical and clinical level.
- Funding was recommended to support preclinical projects to probe the effects of focused ultrasound on the tumor vasculature (with or without antiangiogenic therapy) and examine the outcomes of partial versus total tumor ablation.
- Phase 1 and “window of opportunity” trials were also recommended to evaluate the effects of focused ultrasound in the clinical setting.
A detailed roadmap and list of action items are provided in the white paper, and researchers and clinicians are encouraged to contact Jessica Foley, PhD, the Foundation’s Managing Director of the Cancer Immunotherapy Program, if they are interested in addressing knowledge gaps identified during the workshop.