ViewRay, Inc., Cleveland, Ohio, has announced that the clinical team at Siteman Cancer Center at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis has treated its 1,000th patient using MRIdian MRI-guided radiation therapy.

Siteman Cancer Center helped pioneer MRI-guided radiation therapy, becoming the first center to treat patients with MRIdian in January 2014. Siteman also leads the industry as the first to perform adaptive radiation therapy under MRI-guidance. MRIdian’s on-table adaptive capability and automated beam gating, now routinely practiced at Siteman, allows clinicians to personalize the radiation delivery by adapting to daily changes in a patient’s anatomy, while its real-time tissue tracking and beam control allow greater precision to the delivery of radiation therapy. As the use of MR-guided radiation therapy expanded, Siteman acquired a second MRIdian System—the MRIdian Linac—in November 2017, following FDA-clearance of this next-generation technology from ViewRay. The new technology features MRI-guidance combined with linear accelerator delivery.

“We commend the Siteman team for its continued adoption and advancement of innovative technology to further patient care, and congratulate them on reaching this exciting milestone,” says Scott Drake, president and CEO of ViewRay. “The center’s trailblazing research and cutting-edge treatments have played a big role in the clinical acceptance and growing adoption of MRI-guided radiation therapy, which, in turn, has benefitted not just the 1,000 cancer patients at Siteman but many others around the world.”

“The location of tumors in the body can fluctuate slightly in response to subtle movements, such as breathing, potentially disrupting the precise target of a radiation beam,” says Jeff Michalski, MD, Carlos A. Perez distinguished professor, vice chair and director of clinical programs in radiation oncology at Siteman Cancer Center and Washington University School of Medicine. “MR-guided radiation therapy allows us to visualize and precisely track the contours of a patient’s tumor as radiation therapy is being delivered. With this enhanced visibility, we can quickly adjust the dose of radiation in real time to account for changes in the position of a tumor. This capability helps to ensure that the maximum dose reaches the tumor and incidental exposure to surrounding healthy tissues is minimized.”

Clinicians and researchers at Siteman have been active in sharing their research and clinical experience to further the practice of MRI-guided radiation therapy. To date, the team has published nearly 40 manuscripts in peer-reviewed journals and presented data at more than 100 major medical meetings, highlighting its MRI-guided radiation therapy experience. At Siteman, MRI-guided radiation therapy is involved in the treatment of patients whose tumors lie near critical anatomical structures and is being evaluated in clinical trials for pancreas, breast and lung cancers.

Feature image: courtesy of Siteman