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SonaCare Medical in collaboration with London hospital

SonaCare Medical in collaboration with London hospital to integrate image registration with HIFU system

SonaCare Medical, the company based in Charlotte, NC, USA and specialized in High-Intensity Focused Ultrasound (HIFU) technologies, has announced a collaboration with University College London, London UK to integrate SmartTarget image registration and fusion software into SonaCare Medical’s innovative HIFU systems.

“SmartTarget software technology combines advanced soft-tissue modeling and multimodal image registration techniques to compensate for prostate deformation and provide a clinically practical solution to MR-ultrasound fusion for high-accuracy targeted therapy,” said Dean Barratt, PhD, Senior Lecturer at the UCL Centre for Medical Image Computing. “Working with SonaCare Medical is an important development since it provides an exciting opportunity to rapidly integrate SmartTarget into a market-leading commercial product, the Sonablate 500, and leverage UCL’s clinical expertise in tissue-preserving focal HIFU therapy.”

Enabling image-guided targeting of prostate tumors, SmartTarget combines and displays diagnostic information from ultrasound, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and previous biopsies to enable targeted prostate biopsy and treatment. SmartTarget is based on breakthrough image analysis algorithms developed at the UCL Centre for Medical Image Computing and has undergone extensive clinical evaluation as part of clinical research studies led by Professor Mark Emberton, MD, Professor of Interventional Oncology and Director of the Division of Surgery and Interventional Science at UCL. More than 40 prostate cancer patients have been successfully treated at UCLH using the Sonablate® 500 with the aid of SmartTarget as part of the INDEX Trial. The system is also used within other UCL-led clinical trials that focus on targeted prostate biopsy.

“While tissue preserving strategies have been used successfully in other solid organ cancers, adoption in prostate cancer has been hampered by limitations in diagnosing and localizing clinically significant prostate cancers,” said Mark Carol, M.D., Chief Development Officer for SonaCare Medical. “Designed to enable targeted treatment of clinically significant prostate cancers and to reduce treatment-related side effects, the development of SmartTarget image registration and fusion technology is a tremendous breakthrough that may truly transform prostate cancer care.”

The SmartTarget project, funded by the UK Department of Health and Wellcome Trust’s Health Innovation Challenge Fund, focuses on translating technology which combines state-of-the-art diagnostic imaging with advanced image guidance technology to provide doctors with information on cancer location, size and shape automatically so that it can be used to direct and guide prostate biopsy and minimally-invasive cancer treatments. In particular, the SmartTarget system exploits MRI, which can detect and characterize clinically important cancers very accurately.

Published results from UCL demonstrate that MRI-US registration can localize lesions on the Sonablate 500 system without interfering with the standard surgical workflow. This not only has potential for improved accuracy of focal treatments, but may also improve diagnostic sampling strategies for prostate cancer. According to UCL researchers, fewer, and better, biopsies could be performed on suspicious lesions seen on pre-biopsy, with potentially increased diagnostic rates of clinically significant cancer, and reduced rates for over-diagnosis of clinically insignificant disease.

“Over the past five years, UCL has performed pioneering research in image registration and fusion technology that has led to significant advances in the clinical validation and adoption of focal HIFU,” said Mike Klein, CEO for SonaCare Medical. “We are proud to work together to expand access to targeted treatment for prostate cancer through the integration of SmartTarget software into SonaCare Medical’s HIFU industry-leading HIFU systems.”

SonaCare Medical was founded in 2004 and is headquartered in Charlotte, N.C. Additional information may be found at www.SonaCareMedical.com.

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chris@ckjcomm.com