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Soft-embalmed human breast tissue as a model for pre-clinical trials of HIFU - preliminary results
© Joy et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2015
Published: 30 June 2015
Around 52,000 people are diagnosed with breast cancer each year in the UK. With the controversy around over diagnosis arising from the breast screening programme there is intense interest in the possibility of safe effective non-invasive treatment of cancers. As a non-invasive method of lumpectomy, focused ultrasound surgery (FUS) may offers reduced risk of infection, fewer complications and a shorter recovery time. It also allows more precise treatment as a result of real-time guidance by magnetic resonance (MR) or ultrasound. Even though specially designed FUS transducers for breast cancer treatment are now becoming available, transducer efficacy needs to be tested with a suitable preclinical model. A specific issue is the accuracy of temperature monitoring of FUS with MRI in the breast, since the presence of large amounts of surrounding fat can impair temperature measurement with the proton resonant frequency. An appropriate anatomical model that enforces comparable physical constraints to the breast and that responds to FUS in the same way would be extremely advantageous. The aim of this feasibility study is to explore the use of soft embalmed cadaveric breast tissue for these purposes. We report here the early results of MRI-guided FUS experiments sonicating dissected breast samples from a soft-embalmed human cadaver with a high body mass index (BMI).
A specially developed MRI compatible chamber and sample holder was developed to secure the sample and ensure reproducible sonications at the transducer focus. A HIFU transducer of frequency of 1.09 MHz and focal length of 69mm was used for sonications. An MRI compatible thermocouple was used to measure the temperature rise induced in the chosen tissues by sonications. The efficacy of sonication was first studied with chicken breast and porcine tissue. The experiments were then repeated with the dissected fatty breast tissue samples from soft-embalmed human cadavers.
Results and conclusions
The authors would like to thanks Dundee Cancer Centre (DCC) for funding this work.
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