New York, NY (PRWEB) October 29, 2010
The reality of broadly accessible proton therapy, a minimally invasive treatment for cancer with substantially less treatment related side effects, has come a step closer. P-CURE, a medical device company developing advanced solutions for proton and other radiation therapies, has received Federal Drug Administration (FDA) approval for the P-ART positioning software, which is a critical part of P-CURE’s integrated imaging, positioning, and treatment adaptation systems. As a result of P-CURE’s developments, the cost to develop and equip proton therapy centers could be reduced by approximately 65 percent.
P-CURE’s system is an imaging-based, accelerator-complementary, treatment platform. The platform comprises a paradigm-shifting fully-integrated combination of patient positioning, imaging, and data processing components. This combination of imaging, positioning and delivery, combined with P-CURE’s semi-automatic adaptive approach, allows for reduced cost, better efficiency and enhanced patient care.
The first clinical installation of the imaging system of the P-CURE's system has already been installed at a world-renowned proton therapy center in the US. The system is being installed at the fixed beam room of the center. This room is even smaller than a conventional radiation therapy room and is capable of delivering all gantry-like proton treatments to patients.
Michael Marash, PhD, CEO of P-CURE, says “the P-CURE innovative solutions now can be connected to any accelerator and fixed beam-line. In addition to everything that current gantry-configured systems can offer, P-CURE offers the advantages of substantially reduced cost, increased capacity for real-time imaging, and increased efficiency. The P-CURE system is capable of performing the entire proton treatment course for both scanning and scattering configurations. “
The historic challenge of radiation therapy has been to balance the delivery of cancer destroying dose distribution with the need to spare healthy tissues and organs. The use of proton beams enables radiation oncologists to deliver higher radiation doses to neutralize cancers while sparing surrounding normal tissues. By minimizing virtually all treatment-related side effects, proton therapy removes the fear of treatment, therefore encouraging earlier patient testing. Proton therapy is minimally invasive; recovery is enhanced and patients retain full quality of life after recovery.
P-CURE is a medical device company focusing on advanced radiation therapy innovations, and the P-CURE's system specifically maximizes the benefits of proton therapy while significantly reducing the equipment and development costs of a proton center.
The higher cost of equipping and developing a proton center is the most significant limiting factor to expanding the availability proton therapy. Currently, the cost of a full service proton center in the United States exceeds $150 million. The Hampton University Proton Therapy Institute in Hampton, VA, opened earlier this year, has reported a building and equipment cost of approximately $225 million.
Because of the high initiating costs, proton therapy is only available to less than one percent of those patients who could benefit from what is widely known as the “beam of hope”. However, proton therapy has the potential to replace most conventional or conformal x-ray treatments based on its proven ability to reduce harmful radiation to healthy tissues and organs. The intrinsic characteristic of the proton beam is its ability to deliver virtually all of the ionizing dose to the specific tumor site without irradiating surrounding healthy tissue and organs.
The P-CURE solution for medical centers contemplating building a proton therapy center for the treatment of cancer and other diseases is dramatic. Currently, typical centers cost between $150 million and $200+ million. The P-CURE solution would reduce these to approximately $50 million, while including breakthrough capabilities to increase treatment accuracy and efficiency.
In the US, proton therapy is covered by Medicare and most insurance carriers for treatment to approximately 40 cancer sites, including head, neck, spinal, lung, breast, abdominal, prostate and other non-metastasized cancers.
The P-CURE innovative, integrated and comprehensive patient positioning system includes:
- Volumetric imaging of the target with 16-slice CT scanner
- Automatic patient positioning based on sub-millimeter 3D/3D position registration
- 2D/2D position registration for low-dose automatic patient positioning
- Robotic patient positioning with 6 degree-of-freedom
- Optical position verification with 3D cameras with sub-millimeter accuracy
- Automatic treatment plan optimization coupled to anatomical changes in the patient
- Full compatibility with both scanning and scattering beam configurations
P-CURE will be exhibiting at the 52nd Annual Meeting of the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) in San Diego, CA, on October 31 through November 3, 2010.
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