Navigation Links
Early cancer treatment successes lead to CAREER Award for Rafael Davalos
Date:4/5/2011

In a recent article in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, co-author Rafael Davalos described the use of a method he invented to successfully treat a seven-year old spayed female Labrador retriever with a five-year history of degenerative coxofemoral joint disease. The dog's frequent lameness led to the discovery of a mass that was consistent with a cancerous tumor. With traditional treatment, survival for such a patient is three to six months.

Davalos of the Virginia Tech Wake Forest School of Biomedical Engineering and Sciences http://www.sbes.vt.edu/people/faculty/primary/davalos.html had five collaborators on the article: Robert E. Neal II and Paulo Garcia, also of the biomedical school, along with John H. Rossmeisl, Jr., Otto I. Lanz and Natalia Henao-Guerrero of the Virginia Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine, all at Virginia Tech. http://www.vetmed.vt.edu/

They described how they used a combination of Davalos' patent pending method of irreversible electroporation followed by the well-known medical treatment of chemotherapy to shrink the tumor. After the tumor developed resistance to the chemotherapy, they used irreversible electroporation a second time to completely eradicate all signs of the cancer. After six months, the authors reported in the Feb. 14, 2011 journal article that the family pet was in complete remission according to clinical and computerized tomography scans. http://jco.ascopubs.org/cgi/doi/10.1200/JCO.2010.33.0902

It is now 12 months since the team first treated the patient, and the dog remains in complete remission.

Today, the National Science Foundation has named Davalos as one of its 2011 recipients of a CAREER Award to continue his trailblazing research on the ability of irreversible electroporation to treat diseased cells with and without adjuvant chemotherapeutic agents or radiation. The CAREER award is the National Science Foundation's most prestigious award in support of junior faculty who exemplify the role of teacher-scholars.

Davalos explained his novel process applies electrical pulses, each microseconds in length, to a targeted tissue area. The goal is to permanently open nanopores in the membranes of a cell, causing cell death. The destruction of the cells in this case is not due to injury from heat, and therefore doesn't damage the supporting structures in the tissue, including the extracellular matrix, blood vessels, and nerves. "This accomplishment is very important since it allows the selective treatment of cells while respecting healthy tissue architecture," Davalos added.

"The procedure is essentially done with two minimally invasive electrodes placed into the targeted region," Davalos said, "delivering approximately 80 pulses to the site in about one minute. The pulses are high voltage, but low energy, so no significant heating occurs as a result of the procedure."

With his CAREER award of $ 450,000, Davalos will specifically look at whether irreversible electroporation procedures can be adapted for the destruction of special tumors called glioblastoma multiforme, the most common and aggressive type of primary brain tumor in humans. The median survival for people diagnosed with these tumors is only 15 months. The team, which also includes Tom Ellis at Wake Forest University and John Robertson at the Vet School, has already treated a canine patient with a brain tumor that was refractory to surgical resection. They used their procedure to kill a majority of the tumor volume, making it possible to treat the rest of the remaining cancer cells with radiation. At four months after treatment, there was no sign of the tumor.

"One of the reasons for the poor survival is that glioma cells typically infiltrate up to two centimeters beyond the volume of visible tumor," Davalos explained. Since the electric field dissipates from the electrode, the process gives rise to regions of reversibly electroporated cells outside the ablation zone. These cells may then be more susceptible to the uptake of drugs.

"We propose to assess irreversible electroporation 's capacity to treat infiltrative cells within this reversible zone when combined with chemotherapeutic agents. Treatment of malignant gliomas is also limited by insufficient delivery of drugs due to the blood-brain-barrier. Therefore, this plan will also investigate whether IRE can be applied to mediate blood-brain-barrier disruption to aid in the delivery of chemotherapeutic agents.," Davalos said.

Davalos will use a combination of experiments and modeling on the molecular, cellular, and tissue levels. He believes that the broader impacts of his work will allow the medical community to use this therapy in other pathologies such as cardiac arrhythmias.


'/>"/>

Contact: Lynn A. Nystrom
tansy@vt.edu
540-231-4371
Virginia Tech
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. Stevens strengthens Dominican Republics Early Warning System for Inundations
2. Reproducing early and often is the key to rapid evolution in plants
3. Early-stage gene transcription creates access to DNA
4. Global Viral Forecasting Initiative receives $11M to implement pandemic early warning system
5. Baby talk: The roots of the early vocabulary in infants learning from speech
6. Gaining too much weight during pregnancy nearly doubles risk of having a heavy baby
7. Hypertension develops early, silently, in African-American men
8. Joslin research finds nearly three-quarters of youths with diabetes insufficient in vitamin D
9. Study: Did early climate impact divert a new glacial age?
10. Water in the early universe
11. Haag honored with Presidential Early Career Scientists Award
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Early cancer treatment successes lead to CAREER Award for Rafael Davalos
(Date:12/16/2016)... , Dec 16, 2016 Research and Markets ... Market - Global Forecast to 2021" report to their offering. ... The biometric ... grow at a CAGR of 14.06% from 2016 to 2021. The ... is projected to reach 854.8 Million by 2021. The growth of ...
(Date:12/15/2016)... , Dec 15, 2016 ... Research and Markets has announced the ... their offering. The report forecasts the global military biometrics ... The report has been prepared based on an in-depth ... landscape and its growth prospects over the coming years. The report also ...
(Date:12/12/2016)... , Dec. 12, 2016  Researchers at ... possibilities for graphene by combining the material with ... highly sensitive pressure detector able to sense pulse, ... a small spider.  The research ... can be read here:  http://science.sciencemag.org/content/354/6317/1257 ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:1/17/2017)... NEW YORK , Jan. 17, 2017  Only ... companies put patients over profits, while only 16 percent ... Poll® study released today. Meanwhile, 36 percent of U.S. ... nurses) put patients over profits, compared to hospitals (23%). ... health care maelstrom," said Wendy Salomon , vice ...
(Date:1/17/2017)... ... January 17, 2017 , ... ... 2016 annual meeting of the North American Spine Society (NASS)1 demonstrate high ... the majority of cases, when PEEK-OPTIMA™ HA Enhanced is used for interbody-fusion ...
(Date:1/17/2017)... ... 2017 , ... One Million Solutions in Health announces, as ... investment towards 15+ TEC Validation Projects™. As a pre-competitive consortium, SafeTEC ... safety assessment, for the industry as a whole. , Through the SafeTEC community ...
(Date:1/17/2017)... NJ and Liege, Belgium (PRWEB) , ... January ... ... complete solutions for sample preparation and epigenetics research, recently announced a collaboration with ... develop a high-sensitivity DNA amplification method for library preparation, following the company’s successful ...
Breaking Biology Technology: