New Foundation Program Funds Veterinary Clinical Trials

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In November 2017, the Focused Ultrasound Foundation launched a new veterinary program to develop focused ultrasound therapies for the treatment of companion animals. We are now supporting trials to investigate treating cancer and promote wound healing in pets – and more studies are in the pipeline. 

Advantages of Focused Ultrasound in Veterinary Medicine



Theraclion's Echopulse device

Focused ultrasound offers a variety of benefits over traditional therapies in animals. It is a noninvasive therapy that can reduce the risk of infection and eliminate the need for stitches, making recovery safer and less painful for animals. One to three focused ultrasound treatments can achieve the same results as traditional therapy, without the need for surgery or radiation, which requires as many as 30 treatments. 

“With this program, we are starting a virtuous cycle where veterinarians will have new, innovative therapies to offer clients, and we can apply the experience obtained using focused ultrasound in pets to accelerate the adoption of the technology for human applications,” says Foundation chairman Neal F. Kassell, MD. READ MORE >

Treating Canine Cancer 

A trial to treat sarcomas and mast cell tumors in dogs is now underway at the Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine (VMCVM) at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Va. In the Foundation-funded trial, Clinical Assistant Professor of Radiology, Jeffrey Ruth, DVM, and his team are investigating focused ultrasound therapy to noninvasively destroy tumors and stimulate the dogs’ own immune systems to fight the cancer. Researchers are using a device developed by French company TheraclionREAD MORE >

In tandem with the work at Virginia Tech, researchers at the Oklahoma State University Center for Veterinary Health Sciences are also exploring the use of focused ultrasound for soft tissue tumors in dogs and cats in a separate trial. Ashish Ranjan, BVSc, PhD, leads the Laboratory of Nanomedicine and Targeted Therapy there, and to date, they have treated five canine and feline patients. READ MORE >

Meet Maddi Lynn

During a grooming appointment, a technician noticed a small growth on Maddi Lynn’s front leg. A number of tests confirmed that she had a malignant sarcoma. In late March, Maddi Lynn was the first patient to be treated in the trial at Virginia Tech.

READ MORE >
Meet Oreo

Oreo developed a cancerous growth on his lip, and traditional treatment options meant surgery and/or radiation. But, researchers at the Oklahoma State University Center for Veterinary Health Sciences offered another option – a focused ultrasound trial.

READ MORE >

Accelerating Healing



 

Dr. Ranjan and his team have begun another study investigating focused ultrasound’s ability to speed wound healing at the Oklahoma State University Center for Veterinary Health Sciences. 

Nonhealing wounds are caused by biofilm-forming bacteria and are difficult to treat, often requiring long-duration antimicrobial treatment, extensive surgical intervention, and in many cases, limb amputations. In this Foundation-funded trial, Dr. Ranjan and his team will use focused ultrasound to treat hygromas – a condition where repeated pressure on a bony joint produces significant swelling. These masses can become infected and painful and are very challenging to treat. 
READ MORE >

Pet owners who are interesting in learning more about these studies should contact:

Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine in Blacksburg, Virginia
Mindy Quigley – Clinical Trials Coordinator, VMCVM
(540) 231-1363


Oklahoma State University in Stillwater, Oklahoma
Dr. Martin Furr – Interim Director, Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital
(405) 744-8751

Interested in getting involved?

The Focused Ultrasound Foundation is actively seeking to promote interest in focused ultrasound within the veterinary community and plans to host discussion forums on the topic. Interested researchers and veterinarians should contact the Foundation’s director of the veterinary program, Kelsie Timbie, PhD, at or visit the Veterinary Program page on our website.

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