A Diagnostics & Imaging Week

TomoTherapy (Madison, Wisconsin) said that Saudi Arabia's leading cancer center, King Faisal Specialist Hospital & Research Center (KFSH&RC; Riyadh), will become the region's first to treat patients with the company's Hi Art treatment system, a next-generation radiation therapy solution designed to improve the precision of cancer care.

KFSH&RC commemorated the system installation in a ceremony held during a scientific meeting at the hospital earlier this month.

The meeting, titled "Innovative Approaches in Radiotherapy: Beyond Tomorrow," attracted radiation oncology professionals from throughout Saudi Arabia and featured a roster of speakers, including TomoTherapy co-founder/chairman Thomas (Rock) Mackie, PhD.

Mackie said, "TomoTherapy is . . . pleased to partner with this world-renowned center as it implements the only solution designed to deliver on the promises of image-guided, intensity-modulated radiation therapy [IG-IMRT]."

The company said the Hi Art system is unique among radiation therapy devices in its computed tomography (CT) scanner-based design, which allows clinicians to acquire a true CT image of the patient immediately before daily treatment to help ensure accuracy.

"Then, using the same equipment as used in imaging, the treatment team can deliver highly-precise radiation in a continuous, 360-degree [helical] pattern," TomoTherapy said.

"We look forward to employing TomoTherapy treatment technology to benefit our patients in terms of minimization of dose to normal tissue and improvement of side-effect related outcomes," said Mohammad Al-Shabanah, MD, section head of radiation oncology at the 894-bed Saudi hospital. "One area of interest for us is the use of total marrow irradiation to support our large bone marrow transplant program."

Dr. Belal Moftah, chairman of the department of biomedical physics at KFSH&RC, said, "We are very excited at King Faisal Specialist Hospital & Research Center to open our TomoTherapy unit, which is the first in the Middle East. We plan on maximizing the advantages of integrated CT imaging and highly-modulated beam delivery that TomoTherapy provides."

TomoTherapy' distribution partner in Saudi Arabia is Attieh Medico.

Trial eyes quantitative MRI

VirtualScopics (Rochester, New York), a provider of quantitative imaging for clinical trials, said that BioSyntech (Laval, Quebec) has reached its enrollment goal in the Canadian-European pivotal clinical trial for its cartilage repair device, BST-CarGel, and now will focus on quantitative measures to determine enhanced efficacy compared to the microfracture surgical technique.

Historically, clinical trials for cartilage-related therapies have used pain as the primary endpoint. In the BST-CarGel study, however, VirtualScopics is providing blinded data analysis of quantitative MRI, which will allow BioSyntech to demonstrate BST-CarGel's potential for affecting the quantity and quality of the repaired cartilage as their primary endpoint.

"We are very pleased to be working with BioSyntech on this unique Canadian-European pivotal trial," said Jeff Markin, VirtualScopics president/CEO. "The quantitative nature of these endpoints offers the opportunity to design cartilage repair trials that may be smaller or shorter in comparison to conventional designs which use more qualitative or subjective endpoints. We look forward to providing BioSyntech the critical information they need to demonstrate the effectiveness of their product."

Dr. Matthew Shive, chief scientific officer at BioSyntech, said, "VirtualScopics' experience in incorporating standardized, yet advanced, imaging into international, multi-center clinical trials has allowed us to conduct what we believe to be the first trial of its kind in cartilage repair. Strategically, their expertise permitted us to focus on the key parameters of repair which are most prominent following treatment with BST-CarGel."

VirtualScopics is a provider of imaging solutions to accelerate drug and medical device development. It has developed what it terms "a robust software platform for analysis and modeling of both structural and functional medical images."

China Medical's SPR advances

China Medical Technologies (Beijing, China), a company that manufactures advanced in vitro diagnostic products, said it has received a quality testing certificate for its SPR-based Analysis System from one of the State Food and Drug Administration Quality Supervision and Testing Centers.

"Receipt of the certificate marks an important milestone during the SFDA approval process for our SPR System," said Xiaodong Wu, chairman/CEO. "We will continue to work on the approval process, which includes the commencement of 120 clinical trial samples by three SFDA-authorized Tier-1 hospitals and subsequent administrative procedures by the SFDA before its approval."

Meanwhile, he said, "we have commenced the clinical trial for our HPV-DNA Biosensor Chip. Another three SFDA authorized Tier-1 hospitals have collected over 1,000 clinical samples required by the SFDA to conduct the testing for our HPV Chip. They have processed about one- third of the samples and will continue to finish the remaining samples to submit the results for . . . SFDA approval process for the HPV Chip."

He said the company expects to receive SFDA approval for both products before the end of 2009.

Ziehm Solo was launched at ECR

Ziehm Imaging (Nuremberg, Germany) launched its new, compact Ziehm Solo C-arm at the recent European Congress of Radiology (ECR) in Vienna, Austria. The company said Ziehm Solo was designed to meet the needs of pain management and orthopedic imaging, as well as trauma and spine surgery.

"By virtue of its attractive price point, it is an interesting option for more limited hospital budgets," the company said. It added that it responded to the increasing demands on the limited space in an OR's sterile field by designing a system that occupies minimal space while providing optimal image processing and display.

"The CCD Camera can produce more than 4,000 gray scales," Ziehm said. "The optionally integrated metal correction program limits the overexposure of a fluoroscopic image often caused by metal implants by recognizing metal objects such as screws, plates, implants and instrumentation in the field of view and adapting generator output accordingly."

Oman distributor signed for CTLM system

Imaging Diagnostic Systems (Fort Lauderdale, Florida) said that Shihab Muscat United (SMU) has been appointed as its exclusive distributor for the country of Oman. The company will market and service the CT Laser Mammography (CTLM) system to the private and public sector of that Middle East country.

IDSI exhibited at the recent Arab Health 2009 conference, during which it met with many companiess interested in marketing the CTLM system throughout different countries, including Shihab Muscat United.

That company's managing director, Arvind Gaikwad, will present the CT Laser Mammography system to Ministry of Health officials of Oman and to private imaging centers.

"One of the highlights of the CTLM system at the Arab Health conference was the discrete manner in which a woman is examined, which is desirable in the Middle East due to the cultural customs. We hope to produce a long lasting relationship with SMU and introduce the CTLM system to the women of Oman," said Deborah O'Brien, senior vice president of Imaging Diagnostic Systems.

The CTLM system is a breast-imaging system that uses continuous wave laser technology and patented algorithms to create 3-D images of the breast. It is used in conjunction with mammography.

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