New York, NY (PRWEB) November 30, 2013
Voices Against Brain Cancer, an organization dedicated to brain cancer research and advocacy, responds to an article published by Medical XPress on November 25th that discusses how a new implantable pump can improve the treatment and way of life for pediatric cancer patients suffering from leptomeningeal metastases, a type of cancer that “affects the lining of the brain and spinal cord.”
According to the article published by Medical XPress titled, “A better pump for pediatric brain cancer,” the development of this “implantable fusion pump,” which is inserted into the abdomen, is an innovative step in pediatric brain cancer treatment. This pump is able to “send chemotherapy into the spinal fluid for direct delivery to the brain,” which eradicates the need for spinal taps and hospital stay.
Ellis Meng, a National Science Foundation funded scientist and associate professor of biomedical and electrical engineering at the University of Southern California, explains the feasibility of this device in regards to the type of brain cancer it is treating. “With this disease, you need a lot of drugs, since the spinal fluid is constantly being made and replenished, every six hours,” says Meng. “So it makes sense to treat with this type of pump, because we have the ability to dose it frequently.”
Although implantable pumps are already used within the scientific community, the technology behind this pump is what makes it innovative. Rather than using the standard motor, this pump utilizes “bubble power,” which means that the pump relies on “the power of electrolytically generated bubbles,” to control “the infusion of drugs into the body.” The article says the pump is also tether free, which is appealing because “humans want to be able to move around and experience daily life and not be reminded all the time of being ill.”
Michael Klipper, chairman of Voices Against Brain Cancer, an organization dedicated to brain cancer research and advocacy, says that this pump presents exciting prospects for the future of pediatric brain cancer treatment. “Although it’s still in the early stages of development, I think this pump has much to offer in the arena of patient care. It would be a huge step for pediatrics if children could receive treatment from the comforts of home, and live their lives outside of a hospital. I think it speaks to the strides we are making in brain cancer research that a pump this revolutionary is only a few years away. I’m optimistic about the possibilities of this project.”
VABC has a wide variety of initiatives in place for brain cancer research, awareness and support. The organization’s research grants fund cutting-edge research programs that will have a monumental impact on the diagnosis and treatment of brain cancer. VABC currently funds research at several esteemed institutions such as Brookhaven National Laboratory, Cleveland Clinic, Columbia, Cornell, Duke, Harvard, Johns Hopkins, Memorial Sloan-Kettering and Yale, to name a few.
VABC's mission is to find a cure for brain cancer by advancing scientific research, increasing awareness within the medical community and supporting patients, their families and caregivers afflicted with this devastating disease.
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