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Varian Medical Systems Spotlights Fully Integrated Intensity Modulated Proton Therapy at PTCOG 2011 Meeting

PHILADELPHIA, May 6, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Varian Medical Systems (NYSE: VAR) is highlighting its ProBeam™ proton therapy system and Eclipse™ treatment planning capabilities at the 2011 PTCOG meeting here from May 8th-14th .

"Intensity modulated proton therapy (IMPT) is the new frontier in proton therapy and has the potential to improve dose distributions in the same fashion that IMRT did for conventional X-ray radiotherapy," says Moataz Karmalawy, head of Varian's particle therapy group. "This means getting closer to the radiation therapy treatment goal of applying optimum dose to the cancerous tumour while sparing healthy tissue and organs at risk that lie in the beam's path."

"IMPT requires the integration of smart treatment planning and precise pencil beam scanning delivery," adds Karmalawy. "We've achieved that by teaming up our market-leading Eclipse treatment planning software with our ProBeam delivery system." Eclipse recently received FDA 510(k) clearance for use with Varian's IMPT delivery systems in the U.S.

The goal of IMPT is to shape the dose distribution so that it matches the shape of the targeted tumor in all three dimensions.  An important feature of the latest Eclipse release is the ability to analyze the robustness of a treatment plan in terms of its ability to optimally cover the tumor and reduce dose to healthy tissues.  "IMPT is especially beneficial for complex tumor shapes, such as head-and-neck tumors, tumors of the lower abdomen that have a curved shape, and tumors wrapped around the spinal cord or brain stem," says Karmalawy.

Varian's ProBeam system incorporates pencil-beam scanning technology, which optimizes the dose applied to every point within the area being treated. Several new ProBeam features will be demonstrated in the Varian booth, including a new user interface, a more compact robotic patient positioner and advanced imaging capabilities for precise patient setup verification and correction utilizing planar imaging and 3D kV cone CT imaging.

"With the introduction of pencil beam scanning, the workflow of proton therapy has already become significantly more efficient," says Karmalawy. "The introduction of the new user interface, the patient positioner and imaging enhancements make this system easier to use for clinicians, building on our workflow expertise in conventional radiotherapy."

Varian has equipped the Rinecker Proton Therapy Centre (RPTC) in Munich, site of the world's first clinical IMPT treatments. Construction work is currently underway at the Scripps Proton Therapy Center in San Diego, which will also be equipped with Varian hardware and software. The company has also been named preferred supplier for a number of other proton therapy ventures globally.

"Varian is entirely committed to proton therapy and brings the same integrated, automated and versatile approach to protons as it has for many years of leadership in radiation therapy," says Lester Boeh, head of Varian's emerging businesses group.

Editorial contact: Neil Madle, Varian Medical Systems, +44 7786 526068

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, 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 5,500 people who are located at manufacturing sites in North America, Europe, and China and approximately 70 sales and support offices around the world. For more information, visit

SOURCE Varian Medical Systems
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