A new startup hopes to offer a safer and more effective treatment for atherosclerosis through its licensing of University of Minnesota medical technology.
Emad Ebbini, an electrical and computer engineering professor in the College of Science and Engineering at the University of Minnesota
, led a team that developed the high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) technology, according to a U of M press release. The university says it has finalized a license agreement with startup International Cardio Corporation, who declined to comment for this article.
Atherosclerosis is a condition in which arteries become blocked by a buildup of plaque, usually treated with drugs or angioplasty.
By contrast, HIFU is a noninvasive, real-time ultrasonic imaging and localized treatment of tissue abnormalities which developers hope may have even broader applications, including the treatment of cancer.
The form of non-ionizing radiation localizes treatment to small areas (the size of a grain of rice or a sesame seed, states the release) at a much faster rate than other current systems such as MRI.
The technology links imaging and therapy by returning dynamic images that allow doctors to almost instantaneously refocus the energy at the target--an outcome that can be faster, more precise, and safer than invasive surgery or radiation therapy.
The equipment necessary for HIFU is less expensive than other imaging techniques, such as MRI, making it more accessible to doctors and less expensive for patients, says the release.
International Cardio Corporation may submit the technology to the FDA for testing later this year.
Source: University of Minnesota
Writer: Jeremy Stratton