Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Landmark UNC-led study finds radiofrequency ablation is effective treatment for Barrett's esophagus

28.05.2009
A landmark clinical trial led by a University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill researcher concludes that radiofrequency ablation is an effective treatment for dysplasia in people with Barrett's esophagus, a condition that can lead to deadly gastrointestinal cancer.

"These results show there is a substantial difference between treatment with radiofrequency ablation and a placebo or 'sham' treatment," said Nicholas Shaheen, M.D., principal investigator of the study, associate professor in the UNC Schools of Medicine and the UNC Gillings School of Public Health and director of UNC's Center for Esophageal Diseases and Swallowing. "It's a strongly positive finding."

The study is published in the May 28, 2009 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

Barrett's esophagus is a condition in which repeated acid reflux causes the cells that normally line the esophagus to be replaced by a different type of cell, similar to those normally found in the intestines. This process is called intestinal metaplasia. By itself Barrett's is not a life-threatening problem, but a small percentage of people with Barrett's will develop esophageal adenocarcinoma, an especially deadly form of cancer.

Radiofrequency ablation (RFA), a non-invasive technique that uses thermal energy, or heat, to destroy cells, is very effective at destroying abnormal cells in the esophagus. The new UNC-led study is the first randomized trial to evaluate radiofrequency ablation for treating dysplasia, a more advanced stage of Barrett's esophagus in which the abnormal cells acquire precancerous traits.

The RFA system used in the study uses thermal energy provided by a set of electromagnetic coils on the surface of a balloon, Shaheen said. "The balloon is placed in the area of the esophagus where the offending cells are and the balloon is inflated. Energy is then passed through the electromagnetic coils and, because we know how far apart the coils are spaced and how much energy is being put through them, we get a very reliable depth of burn, such that you can kill the abnormal cells on the inner surface without damaging the whole organ."

In the study, 127 people were randomized to receive either radiofrequency ablation or a simulated, "sham" version of the procedure at one of 19 participating medical centers. Among those with low grade dysplasia who received radiofrequency ablation, 90.5 percent were free of dysplasia 12 months after treatment, compared to 22.7 percent in those who received the sham procedure. Among those with high grade dysplasia, 81 percent who received radiofrequency ablation had complete eradication of intestinal metaplasia, compared to 19 percent in the sham group.

Overall, 77.4 percent of study participants treated with RFA had complete eradication of intestinal metaplasia, compared to 2.3 percent in the sham group. There was also less progression towards disease in the RFA group, 3.6 percent vs. 16.3 percent, and significantly more sham subjects developed esophageal adenocarcinoma, 9.3 percent vs. 1.2 percent.

The study concluded that RFA demonstrated a high rate of eradication of dysplasia and intestinal metaplasia and that these changes reduced the risk of progression towards dysplasia and the risk of developing cancer.

Funding for the study was provided by BARRX Medical Inc., which manufactures the HALO360 radiofrequency ablation system used in the study, the Investigator-Sponsored Study Program of AstraZeneca and a grant from the National Institutes of Health.

For more information about Barrett's esophagus, visit http://digestive.niddk.nih.gov/ddiseases/pubs/barretts/

Tom Hughes | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.unc.edu

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht WAKE-UP provides new treatment option for stroke patients | International study led by UKE
17.05.2018 | Universitätsklinikum Hamburg-Eppendorf

nachricht First form of therapy for childhood dementia CLN2 developed
25.04.2018 | Universitätsklinikum Hamburg-Eppendorf

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Explanation for puzzling quantum oscillations has been found

So-called quantum many-body scars allow quantum systems to stay out of equilibrium much longer, explaining experiment | Study published in Nature Physics

Recently, researchers from Harvard and MIT succeeded in trapping a record 53 atoms and individually controlling their quantum state, realizing what is called a...

Im Focus: Dozens of binaries from Milky Way's globular clusters could be detectable by LISA

Next-generation gravitational wave detector in space will complement LIGO on Earth

The historic first detection of gravitational waves from colliding black holes far outside our galaxy opened a new window to understanding the universe. A...

Im Focus: Entangled atoms shine in unison

A team led by Austrian experimental physicist Rainer Blatt has succeeded in characterizing the quantum entanglement of two spatially separated atoms by observing their light emission. This fundamental demonstration could lead to the development of highly sensitive optical gradiometers for the precise measurement of the gravitational field or the earth's magnetic field.

The age of quantum technology has long been heralded. Decades of research into the quantum world have led to the development of methods that make it possible...

Im Focus: Computer-Designed Customized Regenerative Heart Valves

Cardiovascular tissue engineering aims to treat heart disease with prostheses that grow and regenerate. Now, researchers from the University of Zurich, the Technical University Eindhoven and the Charité Berlin have successfully implanted regenerative heart valves, designed with the aid of computer simulations, into sheep for the first time.

Producing living tissue or organs based on human cells is one of the main research fields in regenerative medicine. Tissue engineering, which involves growing...

Im Focus: Light-induced superconductivity under high pressure

A team of scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg investigated optically-induced superconductivity in the alkali-doped fulleride K3C60under high external pressures. This study allowed, on one hand, to uniquely assess the nature of the transient state as a superconducting phase. In addition, it unveiled the possibility to induce superconductivity in K3C60 at temperatures far above the -170 degrees Celsius hypothesized previously, and rather all the way to room temperature. The paper by Cantaluppi et al has been published in Nature Physics.

Unlike ordinary metals, superconductors have the unique capability of transporting electrical currents without any loss. Nowadays, their technological...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Save the date: Forum European Neuroscience – 07-11 July 2018 in Berlin, Germany

02.05.2018 | Event News

Invitation to the upcoming "Current Topics in Bioinformatics: Big Data in Genomics and Medicine"

13.04.2018 | Event News

Unique scope of UV LED technologies and applications presented in Berlin: ICULTA-2018

12.04.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Supersonic waves may help electronics beat the heat

18.05.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Keeping a Close Eye on Ice Loss

18.05.2018 | Information Technology

CrowdWater: An App for Flood Research

18.05.2018 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>