Ultrasound trial offers hope for brain cancer patients

New technique temporarily allows drugs to cross blood brain barrier to treat tumours

A technique has been developed that could revolutionise the treatment of brain cancers and neurodegenerative diseases by temporarily allowing drugs and other substances to cross the blood brain barrier – a structure that separates the brain’s blood vessels from the rest of its tissues.

A trial in four women whose breast cancer had spread to the brain showed that magnetic resonance-guided focused ultrasound (MRgFUS) could safely deliver the antibody therapy Herceptin into their brain tissue, causing the tumours to shrink.

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