Today’s Solutions: March 01, 2024

A brilliant group of researchers at University College London (UCL) have figured out a novel way to use MRI scanners.

MRI scanners are conventionally used as an essential tool in the detection of diseases, but now, this equipment could potentially be the key to destroying cancer tumors without the patient ever having to undergo open surgery.

The research team at UCL has developed a novel breakthrough cancer therapy called “minimally invasive image-guided ablation,” or MINIMA for short. The therapy, which has already been tested on mice, involves ferromagnetic thermoseeds, which are 2mm metal spheres that can be guided to a tumor via magnetic propulsion generated by an MRI scanner, and then heated remotely to kill whatever cancer cells in proximity.

If these minuscule magnetic “seeds” can be used in humans, they could be the key to providing precise treatment for hard-to-reach tumors in the brain and prostate.

MRI seeds strengthen our fight against cancer

The three major components of MINIMA are precise seed imaging, navigation through brain tissue using a customized MRI system (tracked to within 0.3 mm accuracy), and eradicating the tumor in a mouse model through heat.

“Using an MRI scanner to deliver a therapy in this way allows the therapeutic seed and the tumor to be imaged throughout the procedure, ensuring the treatment is delivered with precision and without having to perform open surgery,” says Rebecca Baker in a press release, lead author of the study at the UCL Centre for Advanced Biomedical Imaging. “This could be beneficial to patients by reducing recovery times and minimizing the chance of side effects.”

The team hopes to improve upon the current seed’s structure by making it so that they can function as a tiny cutting knife that can be guided through tissue. This could make it possible for surgeons to accomplish remotely controlled procedures which would revolutionize non-invasive surgery.

Source study: Advanced Science – Image-guided magnetic thermoseed navigation and tumor ablation using a magnetic resonance imaging system

Solutions News Source Print this article
More of Today's Solutions

Restitution of Asante Kingdom treasures: US museum returns stolen artifacts a...

In a historic event, the Asante kingdom of Ghana welcomed the return of seven royal treasures seized by British colonial forces 150 years ago ...

Read More

Guess what? Women need less physical activity than men for the same longevity...

Women who want to live a longer, healthier life may have just received some good news: according to a recent study published in the ...

Read More

This little known weed is a powerful source of plant-based omega-3s

Omega-3 fatty acids are an essential fat that the body can’t produce on its own and that we need to survive. They are key ...

Read More

Be intentional about respecting wildlife by keeping these 4 things in mind

This year, if you are striving to be more considerate of wildlife while on your summer travels and hikes, but still want to enjoy, ...

Read More