BSD Medical is Now Pyrexar Medical

The complete line of BSD Hyperthermia products are availble thru Pyrexar Medical

Not the droids your looking for cancer analogy

Our immune system has mechanisms in place for detecting and destroying cancer cells.  A form of a triggered self-destruct instruction set that tells the cell to stop duplicating and disassemble itself into reusable components.

So, if we know the body can fight off disease and infection, why does it allow cancer cells to survive and grow?  

The simplest explanation is that the immune system does not see these rogue cells. The cancerous tumor uses the biological equivalent of a Jedi mind trick to mask themselves from the immune system. “These are not the cancer cells you are looking for”.  The culprit, according to the researchers at National Jewish Health, is a lipid secreted by the cancer tumor called LPA (lsyophosphatidic acid).  LPA binds to receptors in cancer killing T cells and makes the tumor invisible.

What if we could make all cancer cells visible to the body’s immune system?

That is what researchers want to do, and they may have found a solution in hyperthermia. It has been shown that when tumor cells are heated up to “fever temperature” (around 41-43˚ C) using hyperthermia, the tumor cells essentially light up to the body’s anti-tumor immune response.  It is also believed that once a specific type of cancer cell is identified to the immune system,  that information is telegraphed through the body revealing and attacking those cancer cells growing elsewhere.  So treating a cancer in one part of the body may trigger an immune response everywhere.

Read more about “Immune modulation induced by hyperthermia” in the article Local hyperthermia combined with radiotherapy and-/or chemotherapy: Recent advances and promises for the future by N.R. Datta (et al) in the recent issue of Cancer Treatment Reviews

Celsion nanotechnology cancer drug

Early Evidence Shows Positive Data for Hyperthermia Drug

It may not be nano-robots yet, but hyperthermia triggered smart release drugs are definitely here to stay. Celsion, maker of the chemotherapy drug ThermoDox, announced data from its Phase 2 DIGNITY trial for recurrent chest wall (RCW) breast cancer.  The early results, available from their recent press release, show that every patient in the trial experienced a clinical benefit.

ThermoDox is one of several heat-activated nanoparticle liposomal encapsulated drugs arriving on the market. Like traditional chemotherapy, the encapsulated drug is delivered through the blood stream to all parts of the body.  The difference is that drug is only released when it reaches the tumor and nowhere else. It does this using a hyperthermic response mechanism. Patients receive localized hyperthermia treatments to heat the tumor to 42˚C (108˚F). The hyperthermia treatment begins to shrink and sensitizes the tumor to chemotherapy.  When the drug reaches the “thermal zone” (40˚C or greater), it opens up the encapsulation releasing the chemo on target.

Doing this not only makes sure that enough therapeutic drug gets delivered to the cancer, but also protects the rest of the body from the harmful side effects of traditional chemotherapy delivery.  The remainder of the unused drugs gets flushed through the body naturally.  I have linked the Celsion webpage that has a great video demonstrating the process.

At it’s annual scientific meeting in Zurich, Switzerland June 24-26, 2015, the European Society of Hyperthermic Oncology (ESHO) bestowed its highest honor, the 30th annual ESHO-Pyrexar Award, on Jan Vrba, PhD. Dr. Vrba is Professor and Chairman, Department of Electromagnetic Fields, Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Czech Technical University (CTU), Prague. The ESHO-Pyrexar Award is awarded annually for outstanding contributions to hyperthermic oncology, education and scientific achievement. Prof. Vrba received his PhD in Communications Technology from the CTU in 1976. He rose through the academic ranks to become full professor and department chairman in 1993, the position he still holds. He has held many prestigious academic appointments at the CTU including membership on the Scientific Board 1994-97, serving as Vice-Rector from 1994-97 and as Chancellor from 2000-2002.

Prof. Vrba’s research efforts have concentrated on the interaction between electromagnetic fields and biological systems most notably the medical application of microwaves, specifically the design of microwave applicators for inducing hyperthermia for cancer treatment.Prof. Vrba has published well over 100 scientific papers.

An indication of the respect held by his scientific colleagues is that Prof. Vrba has been the Congress Chairman of a number of prominent international scientific meetings including: The Annual Meeting of ESHO in Prague in 2007; the Progress in Electromagnetic Research Symposium (PIERS) in Prague in 2007; the Microwave and Radioelectronics Week (MAREW) in Prague in 2008; the Int. Symp. on Microwave & Optical Technology (ISMOT) in Prague in 2011 and again the PIERS meeting in Prague to be held July 5-10, 2015. The PIERS meeting will attract over 2,000 attendees.

Note:  This year's ESHO-Pyrexar Award was sponsored by Dr. Gerhard Sennewald of Dr. Sennewald Medizintechnik GmbH



key CCTA what is ht

According to the American Cancer Society, pancreatic cancer is the 4th leading cause of cancer-related death in the United States. Pancreatic cancer has the highest mortality rate of all major cancers. 94% of pancreatic cancer patients will die within five years of diagnosis – only 6% will survive more than five years.

As you may know, June 23rd is National Pancreatic Cancer Advocacy Day. In preparation, I contacted Dr. Curt Heese from the Cancer Treatment Centers of America in Philadelphia and asked to tell us his experience treating this disease.

Q: Can hyperthermia play a role in the treatment of pancreatic cancer?
A: Certainly pancreatic cancer can be very difficult to treat, and having hyperthermia as a way to potentially improve, while not significantly increasing side effects, is a great advantage for patients.

Q: I know you are using hyperthermia at CTCA, what has been your experience?
A: We’ve been seeing some wonderful responses to the therapy, but one case does stand out. A patient with locally advanced pancreatic cancer was receiving neoadjuvant chemotherapy in preparation for surgery, and deep tissue hyperthermia was being given immediately prior to each chemotherapy session in the hopes of helping achieve a stronger response, thereby increasing resectability.

Q: So your goal is a course of chemotherapy to shrink the tumor before attempting to remove it surgically. And hyperthermia is added to help shrink the tumor and make the tumor more sensitive to the chemo. What was the result in this case?
A: At surgery, they found not just a reduction in tumor burden, but a complete pathologic response with no tumor left when the tissue was examined under microscope. Although we expect size reduction from chemotherapy, chemotherapy alone would not be expected to achieve a complete response. We were thrilled for the patient and it really cemented our belief that hyperthermia can enhance treatment in many types of cancer.

I want to thank Dr. Heese for his comments. I dug into the archives and found an older video clip of Dr. Heese explaining the hyperthermia treatment process. Worth a quick view.