by Gus Iversen
, Editor in Chief | March 29, 2021
From the March 2021 issue of HealthCare Business News magazine
"This shows us another potential benefit of proton therapy for lung cancer patients," said Dr. Timothy Kegelman, M.D., chief resident in the department of radiation oncology in the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, in a statement. "We know proton has the ability to minimize radiation doses to surrounding organs like the heart. And these latest findings suggest that sparing correlates with fewer cardiac problems, compared to conventional therapy."
With proton therapy, users can target tumors more precisely and spare normal surrounding tissues and organs, such as the heart, to radiation, thereby decreasing the risk of cardiac toxicity.
Mevion proton accelerator shows efficacy in FLASH preclinical trial
Mevion Medical Systems has shown progress in utilizing the FLASH effect in a preclinical trial using its S250i proton accelerator, according to findings presented last November at the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) annual meeting.
The company's research showed a clear signal in the survival curves, where the FLASH effect was delivered at the Bragg peak. The Bragg peak plots the energy loss of ionizing radiation as it travels through matter and occurs immediately before proton, Alpha-rays and other ion ray particles come to rest.
"The unique design of Mevion's energy selection system allows, for the first time, the use the Bragg peak of the proton in the FLASH research," Skip Rosenthal, senior vice president of clinical relations, told HCB News. "This opens the door for combining the protection of normal tissues within a FLASH field with the protection of rapid dose fall-off beyond a target. Demonstrating successful FLASH research on the most compact and affordable proton system will open research to a greater number of academic centers than otherwise possible."
IBA hits 100,000 patient milestone
Last fall, IBA announced more than 100,000 patients had undergone treatment with its proton therapy systems around the world. The company described the milestone as marking an important step towards its mission to make proton therapy available to all patients who could benefit from it, by providing healthcare professionals with advanced, high performance proton therapy solutions.
"We are immensely proud that IBA's technology has impacted 100,000 lives, giving patients and their families a new hope for the future,” said Olivier Legrain, IBA CEO, in a statement. “Reaching this milestone would not have been possible without the commitment of our employees and the close relationships that we have continued to build with our clients and partners over the last 30 years. Our common goal is to make proton therapy accessible to a greater number of patients, and we believe that our passion, energy and expertise will enable us to achieve this.”