September 22, 2008
Calypso Medical and The University of Pennsylvania Health System Announce Collaboration for Proton Therapy
Calypso Medical today announced that it has received a $1 million grant from The University of Pennsylvania Health System to develop a compatible version of the Calypso(R) 4D Localization System that would enable real-time tumor tracking during proton therapy for cancer treatment. This funding will go toward developing a modified version of the Calypso System, utilizing GPS for the Body(R) technology, to function with its current high degree of accuracy in a proton therapy environment.
Calypso Medical's GPS for the Body(R) technology uses tiny electromagnetic transponders placed in or around the tumor to provide precise, continuous information on the location of the tumor during external beam radiation therapy. Any movement by the patient, including internal movement of the tumor, may cause the radiation to miss its intended target and hit adjacent healthy tissue. In contrast to other tumor targeting solutions, Calypso's GPS for the Body(R) technology provides continuous tumor position information, objectively and without ionizing radiation, thereby optimizing the delivery of radiation to the tumor and minimizing misapplied radiation to normal tissue.
Proton therapy is an advanced form of external beam radiation whereby protons rather than photons are directed at cancerous tissue. Proton therapy in theory has a significant advantage: protons can be delivered to deposit all of their energy in a single location. Proton therapy is highly precise and able to deliver higher doses of radiation to the tumor, lower doses of radiation to healthy tissue and a lower whole body dose compared to conventional photon therapy. As a result, when used with continuous targeting technology, proton therapy may demonstrate superior tumor control with reduced post-treatment side effects for a wide range of cancers requiring radiation therapy.
According to James Metz, MD, clinical director, department of radiation oncology, at The University of Pennsylvania Health System, "Today, we use Calypso Medical's GPS for the Body(R) technology to guide treatment and manage motion for patients undergoing conventional photon radiation therapy treatment for our prostate cancer patients. The proton project collaboration has the potential of incorporating pinpoint accuracy and real-time tumor tracking in the proton environment. There are a variety of cancers where the tumor target is moving continuously and accurate real-time tracking would enable a wider population of cancer patients to benefit from the combination of proton therapy with the Calypso System."
Eric R. Meier, president and chief executive officer, Calypso Medical notes, "We are delighted that a leading academic center with the reputation of The University of Pennsylvania Health System has recognized the critical contribution Calypso Medical could bring to the field of proton therapy. In addition to improving the accuracy of treatment, the Calypso System has been shown to reduce the set-up time of patients prior to the initiation of conventional photon radiation delivery. This rapid set-up time may allow proton facilities to increase throughput in their already very busy facilities."
To date, Calypso Medical's GPS for the Body(R) technology has been installed in over 50 leading radiation oncology centers across the US, and more than 2,000 prostate cancer patients have been treated with the real-time target tracking guidance of the Calypso System.
About Calypso(R) Medical
Calypso(R) Medical Technologies, Inc. ("Calypso") is a Seattle, WA-based privately held medical device company. The Company's proprietary tumor localization system utilizes miniaturized implanted devices (Beacon(R) electromagnetic transponders) to continuously, accurately, and objectively pinpoint and track the location of tumors for improved accuracy and management of radiation therapy delivery. Calypso addresses two major issues in modern radiation oncology: errors in treatment set-up and tumor motion management during treatment. In addition, the Calypso(R) 4D Localization System's non-ionizing electromagnetic guidance has been found to improve workflow efficiency and treatment room utilization. The technology is designed for body-wide cancers commonly treated with radiation therapy, including prostate, breast, lung, head, neck and other radiation therapy target organs. The products are FDA 510(k) cleared for use in the prostate and post-operative prostatic bed.