Elekta said it and its MRI tech partner Philips began installation of an investigational high-field MR-adaptive linear accelerator system at Wisconsin’s Froedtert & MCW Clinical Cancer Center at the Froedtert Hospital.
The site is the 2nd U.S. and 5th global site to install an MR-linac system, which is under functional evaluation at centers in The Netheralands, Texas and London.
“For more than a decade, the Froedtert & MCW Cancer Network has been at the forefront of the evolution of radiation therapy with the goal of providing more personalized treatments. The foundational work we’ve been doing with MRI-based treatment planning strongly positions us to be among the experts invited to help develop this latest milestone in treating cancer,” Dr. Christopher Schultz of the Froedtert & MCW Cancer Network said in prepared remarks.
The MR-linac machine, from Elekta, combines a radiotherapy system and a high-field MRI scanner with novel software, the company said. The machine allows operating physicians to capture diagnostic images of tumors and surrounding tissues during radiation therapy delivery.
The company said the system is designed to improve targeting of tumor tissue and reduce exposure of healthy tissue to radiation, as well as track tumor tissue movement and changes in shape, location, size or composition between treatment sessions.
“While we already have significant evidence supporting the potential of MR-linac, fully realizing its practical applications will require rigorous evaluation in real world clinical settings. Initially, we will focus on establishing clinical protocols and refining methods for data collection and analysis in pancreatic cancer, a deadly disease with limited treatment options. We are optimistic that MR-linac will be a critical advancement in patient care and ultimately, improve outcomes in this and other types of cancers,” Dr. J. Wilson of the Froedtert & MCW Cancer Network said in a press release.
“We appreciate the continued guidance and support from the Froedtert & MCW Cancer Network and our other consortium members, who have been instrumental in advancing the development of high-field MR-linac. This installation marks the latest milestone in our rapid progress to make this technology a clinical reality, and we believe MR-linac will transform how radiotherapy is delivered and establish new standards of care for difficult to treat cancers,” Elekta scientific research global veep Kevin Brown said in a prepared statement.
“Philips is a pioneer and leader in image guided minimally invasive therapies, a fast growing field because of the benefits for patients, hospitals and health systems. We have been expanding our efforts in interventional oncology, as we are convinced that image-guided therapies will have a positive, transformational impact on oncology. With the combined expertise of Elekta, Philips and other consortium partners such as Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin Cancer Network, we are entering an exciting new phase in exploring the potential of image-guided radiotherapy as a game changer in cancer treatment,” Philips diagnosis & treatment biz CEO Rob Cascella said in a prepared release.