Clinical evidence has shown that sequential application of heat and radiation can double the 2-year survival rate in glioblastoma (Sneed, IJROPB 1998), while in vivo evidence shows that the synergy between heat and radiation is maximized when the two therapies are applied simultaneously (Overgaard, IJROBP 1989). We are therefore developing a simple device capable of simultaneously and uniformly providing both therapies post surgery.
Our device is a balloon placed by the surgeon in the cavity left after surgical resection of the tumor. The balloon will be filled with magnetic nanoparticles which can be heated by an external magnetic field. Radiation comes from a seed delivered into the center of the balloon by a high-dose-rate (HDR) afterloader, a medical device commonly found in cancer centers.
Treatment of tumors with this balloon will be compatible with current surgical methods as well as current and future drug therapies used as adjuvants to surgery. We anticipate that the course of treatment will be 2-5 days as opposed to external beam radiation which takes up to 6 weeks of daily treatment. Following treatment, the balloon will be deflated and withdrawn without the need to reopen the skull. It is our aim to exceed the doubling of survival rate shown in the previous study due to superior heating technology applied simultaneously for maximum benefit.