Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

MIT aims radar research at breast cancer

16.04.2004


A breast cancer treatment based on MIT radar research that was originally aimed at detecting space-borne missiles is showing promise in the final phase of clinical testing.

Preliminary results to be presented on Wednesday, April 21 at the 9th International Congress on Hyperthermic Oncology in St. Louis show that women with early-stage breast cancer who received the MIT treatment prior to lumpectomy had a 43 percent reduction in the incidence rate of cancer cells found close to the surgical margins. This is important because additional breast surgery and/or radiation therapy are often recommended for patients that have cancer cells close to the edge of the lumpectomy surgical margin.

"One of the primary objectives of this randomized study is to demonstrate that heat can affect and kill early-stage breast cancer cells prior to surgery," said William C. Dooley, director of surgical oncology at the University of Oklahoma Breast Institute and principal investigator of the ongoing study. "With this focused heat treatment, it may be possible for the surgeon to provide better margins for the patient and possibly avoid additional treatment procedures and avoid recurrence of the cancer."



Since October 2002, 90 women with early-stage breast cancer have enrolled in the study, in which microwave energy focused externally on the breast is delivered to tumors prior to lumpectomy. The goal is to use focused heat to kill tumor cells and reduce additional surgery (see earlier story at http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/nr/2000/fenn.html). The current results are based on the 64 women who have completed the study.

Treating cancer with heat is not a new idea, but "researchers were having trouble using it to treat tumors deep within the body," said Alan Fenn, a senior staff member at MIT Lincoln Laboratory and inventor of the technique. Further, it’s difficult to deliver the heat only to cancer cells and not overheat normal tissue.

The microwaves in the new technique "heat--and kill--cells containing high amounts of water," he said. Cancer cells have a high water content (around 80 percent), while healthy breast tissue contains much less.

The outpatient procedure uses a single tiny needle probe to sense and measure parameters during treatment. Side effects appear to be minimal.

Patients in the thermotherapy group of the current study receive a minimally invasive heat treatment prior to surgery and radiation therapy, while patients in the control group receive surgery alone prior to radiation therapy. Preliminary results indicate that in the thermotherapy group, 5 of 30 (16.7%) patients had tumor cells close to the surgical margins, whereas in the group receiving surgery alone, 10 of 34 (29.4%) patients had tumor cells close to the margin.

The women participating in this ongoing clinical trial are being treated at the University of Oklahoma in Oklahoma City, Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, the Comprehensive Breast Center in Coral Springs, Fla., the Mroz-Baier Breast Care Clinic in Memphis, Tenn., and several other breast centers in the United States.

Previous Phase II, or dose-escalation, results of the breast cancer heat treatment were reported in the February 2004 issue of the Annals of Surgical Oncology. The data for breast cancer patients treated in the dose-escalation trial were submitted to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to support allowance to proceed with the randomized trial currently underway.

Celsion Corp. exclusively licenses the focused microwave thermotherapy technology from MIT. The company has developed the clinical thermotherapy system and is funding the current clinical studies. The Department of the Air Force funded the original MIT Lincoln Laboratory research by Fenn.

Denise Brehm | MIT
Further information:
http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/www
http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/nr/2000/fenn.html

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht NIST scientists discover how to switch liver cancer cell growth from 2-D to 3-D structures
17.11.2017 | National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)

nachricht High speed video recording precisely measures blood cell velocity
15.11.2017 | ITMO University

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: A “cosmic snake” reveals the structure of remote galaxies

The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.

Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...

Im Focus: Visual intelligence is not the same as IQ

Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.

That is the implication of a new study which shows for the first time that there is a broad range of differences in people's visual ability and that these...

Im Focus: Novel Nano-CT device creates high-resolution 3D-X-rays of tiny velvet worm legs

Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.

During a CT analysis, the object under investigation is x-rayed and a detector measures the respective amount of radiation absorbed from various angles....

Im Focus: Researchers Develop Data Bus for Quantum Computer

The quantum world is fragile; error correction codes are needed to protect the information stored in a quantum object from the deteriorating effects of noise. Quantum physicists in Innsbruck have developed a protocol to pass quantum information between differently encoded building blocks of a future quantum computer, such as processors and memories. Scientists may use this protocol in the future to build a data bus for quantum computers. The researchers have published their work in the journal Nature Communications.

Future quantum computers will be able to solve problems where conventional computers fail today. We are still far away from any large-scale implementation,...

Im Focus: Wrinkles give heat a jolt in pillared graphene

Rice University researchers test 3-D carbon nanostructures' thermal transport abilities

Pillared graphene would transfer heat better if the theoretical material had a few asymmetric junctions that caused wrinkles, according to Rice University...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Ecology Across Borders: International conference brings together 1,500 ecologists

15.11.2017 | Event News

Road into laboratory: Users discuss biaxial fatigue-testing for car and truck wheel

15.11.2017 | Event News

#Berlin5GWeek: The right network for Industry 4.0

30.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

NASA detects solar flare pulses at Sun and Earth

17.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

NIST scientists discover how to switch liver cancer cell growth from 2-D to 3-D structures

17.11.2017 | Health and Medicine

The importance of biodiversity in forests could increase due to climate change

17.11.2017 | Studies and Analyses

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>