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Non-Invasive Radiosurgery with Novalis Tx(TM) Platform Rolling Out Worldwide

Powerful technology from Varian Medical Systems and BrainLAB enabling non-invasive treatment of cancer and disorders of the central nervous


PALO ALTO, Calif., and WESTCHESTER, Ill., Sept. 22 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Doctors around the globe are turning more and more to the use of stereotactic body radiosurgery (SBRT) for the treatment of cancer and other conditions. Using the Novalis Tx platform from Varian Medical Systems (NYSE: VAR) and BrainLAB, doctors are performing image-guided radiosurgery to treat tumors of the brain, spine, lung, and liver, without a single incision in the patient. This advanced technology is on display this week at both the 50th annual meeting of the American Society for Therapeutic Radiology and Oncology in Boston, and at the Congress of Neurological Surgeons 2008 meeting in Orlando, Florida.

"Novalis Tx is a very versatile machine that will facilitate image-guided treatment for a variety of body sites," says Naren Ramakrishna, MD, PhD, Chief, CNS (Central Nervous System) radiation oncology, Brigham and Women's/Dana Farber. "Combining the advanced technologies for imaging, treatment planning, and treatment delivery from both companies, it offers clinicians a fast, versatile, highly precise radiosurgery device for image-guided treatments of the brain or body."

Novalis Tx enables doctors to deliver fast radiosurgery treatments for a large number of indications, including malignant and benign lesions, brain metastases, arteriovenous malformations, and functional lesions. Designed for fast, precise, noninvasive radiosurgical procedures, the Novalis Tx has been adopted by leading academic institutions, regional medical centers, and community hospitals such as Duke University, UCLA, Brigham and Women's Hospital/Dana-Farber Cancer Institute; Henry Ford Health System; Oregon Health & Science University; Palo Alto Medical Foundation; Tata Memorial Hospital in Mumbai; and the University of Bern, Switzerland.

About the Technology

The Novalis Tx platform incorporates two complementary imaging systems that work together to enhance treatment precision by enabling doctors to target areas being treated. The ETX(TM)(ExacTrac(R)) room-based X-ray imaging system provides real-time imaging and fine-tuning of a robotic couch that moves in six dimensions to ensure that the targeted lesion is aligned with the treatment beam during treatment. The OBI(R) (On-Board Imager) cone-beam CT imaging system quickly generates a high-quality 3-D image of the targeted lesion and surrounding tissues, so clinicians can see the precise location and shape of the tumor, fine-tune the patient's position, and make sure that the internal anatomy has not shifted or changed prior to treatment.

"The platform's complementary imaging tools make it possible to track motion during treatment, so targeting can be adjusted if the patient shifts by even a few millimeters," says Dow Wilson, president of Varian's Oncology Systems business. "The Novalis Tx platform also can synchronize treatment with the patient's normal breathing patterns to compensate for motion when treating in or near the lungs."

In addition to its multiple imaging capabilities, the Novalis Tx platform incorporates many features designed to increase its effectiveness, efficiency, or versatility, including:

-- Real-time Snap Verification of patient positioning to verify during

treatment that the lesion is in the right position

-- Correlation between internal and external fiducial markers, rather than

relying on less-accurate optical tracking of external markers only

-- Both non-coplanar and coplanar imaging

-- kV imaging, which yields high-quality images at low X-ray doses

"With Novalis Tx, you can deliver highly advanced stereotactic radiosurgery," says Benjamin Movsas, MD, chairman of the department of radiation oncology at Henry Ford. "When you start treating in areas that are very close to sensitive and critical structures, you want to do it with technology like Novalis Tx, which combines the best of BrainLAB know-how and radiosurgery software experience with the best of technology from Varian."

"We are excited by the continued adoption of Novalis Tx and the positive response from the clinical community," says Jean Hooks, general manager, Oncology, BrainLAB. "Novalis Tx helps enable clinicians, rather than limiting them. ETX and OBI allow clinicians to select the imaging and treatment delivery method that best suits their patient's individual disease. The adoption of Novalis Tx, with its comprehensive imaging capabilities, speed, precision and versatility, is making advanced radiosurgical treatments easily accessible to more hospitals, physicians and their patients."

"With Novalis Tx, we'll be able to perform radiosurgery that is so conformal, it's as if we're shrink-wrapping the tumor with radiation," says Gordon Ray, MD, chairman of the department of radiation oncology at Palo Alto Medical Foundation, which acquired Novalis Tx and is preparing to launch a radiosurgery program later this year. "We'll also be able to treat very small lesions in the spine as well as targets that move with respiration. Although we could do this type of work with other technologies, there are few that could do it as well."

For more information on Novalis Tx, please visit .

About BrainLAB

BrainLAB develops, manufactures and markets software-driven medical technology that enables procedures that are more precise, less invasive, and also less expensive than traditional treatments. Among the core products are image-guided systems that provide highly accurate real-time information used for navigation during surgical procedures. This utility has been further expanded to serve as a computer terminal for physicians to more effectively access and interpret diagnostic scans and other digital medical information for better informed decisions. BrainLAB solutions allow expansion from a single system to operating suites to digitally integrated hospitals covering all subspecialties from neurosurgery, orthopedics, ENT, CMF to spine & trauma and oncology. With 3,000 systems installed in over 70 countries, BrainLAB is a market leader in image-guided technology. The privately held BrainLAB group, founded in 1989, is headquartered in Munich, Germany, and today employs 1,000 people in 16 offices across Europe, Asia, Australia, North and South America. For more information, visit BrainLAB at .

About Varian Medical Systems

Varian Medical Systems, Inc., of Palo Alto, California, is the world's leading manufacturer of medical devices and software for treating cancer and other medical conditions with radiotherapy, radiosurgery, proton therapy, and brachytherapy. The company supplies informatics software for managing comprehensive cancer clinics, radiotherapy centers and medical oncology practices. Varian is a premier supplier of tubes and digital detectors for X-ray imaging in medical, scientific, and industrial applications and also supplies X-ray imaging products for cargo screening and industrial inspection. Varian Medical Systems employs approximately 4,800 people who are located at manufacturing sites in North America and Europe and in its 60 sales and support offices around the world. For more information, visit .


Kate Franco Meryl Ginsberg

BrainLAB Varian Medical Systems

708-486-1915 650-424-4444

SOURCE Varian Medical Systems, Inc.; BrainLAB
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