INSERM Director Visits Foundation, Provides Research Update

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Jean-Yves Chapelon, PhD, is Research Director at INSERM’s LabTAU in Lyon, France and leads a collaborative project between INSERM (the French equivalent of the NIH) and the French FUS company EDAP TMS. He visited the Foundation to update us on the history and current status of Ablatherm technology for treatment of prostate cancer.

Ablatherm is the EDAP TMS ultrasound-guided transrectal FUS system for treating prostate tissue. It was approved by the FDA in 2015. Focal One is their system for focal therapy.

Since the first prototype in 1993, Ablatherm has evolved to provide both first line and salvage prostate therapy for patients around the world. Dr. Chapelon emphasized that HIFU has a favorable risk profile, with recent studies showing 94% to 99% cancer free survival rates in patients who were treated more than 10 years ago.

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Dr. Chapelon highlighted an ongoing University of Oxford clinical trial that lends caution to the currently favored active surveillance approach for patients with low or moderate risk disease.

Another interesting chart showed the changes over time in prostate cancer detection (earlier) and average life span of patients (longer). These data should be taken into consideration when updating treatment guidelines.

Dr. Chapelon is a colleague of Dr. Cyril Lafon, the Foundation’s current Richard Merkin Research Fellow.