VIDEO: Oxygen microbubbles wash in, then the screen brightens from higher energy ultrasound which bursts the microbubbles. The screen goes dark again as the acoustic energy is reduced and the bubbles… view more
(PHILADELPHIA) – Injecting breast cancer with oxygen-filled microbubbles makes tumors three-times more sensitive to radiation therapy and improves survival in animal models of the disease. The study, published Jan 21st in the International Journal of Radiation Oncology* Biology* Physics makes a strong case for moving this technology into clinical trials with breast cancer patients.
“Finding a way to reverse oxygen deficiency in tumors has been a goal in radiation therapy for over 50 years,” says senior author John Eisenbrey, PhD, Assistant Professor of Radiology at http://www.jefferson.edu/university/skmc.html“>Thomas Jefferson University and investigator at Jefferson’s Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center. “We’ve demonstrated here that oxygen microbubbles flush tumors with the gas, and make radiation therapy significantly more effective in animal models.”
Microbubbles were originally developed to help improve ultrasound imaging. However, being able to “pop” oxygen-filled microbubbles within tumors using beams of ultrasound presented researchers with an opportunity. Most solid tumors are oxygen-deficient, in part because they quickly outgrow the supply of oxygen-carrying blood vessels that can penetrate the tumor mass.
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