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Virtual Press Room

Press Conference

A PRESS CONFERENCE presenting two important studies from the AAPM Annual Meeting will be held on Tuesday, Aug. 2, 10 a.m. ET, in the West Overlook Room of the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C.

The press conference will include research on:

Breaking News

Big data and genetically linked lung cancer: A study of nearly 350 patients suggests that a new method of extracting big data from positron emission tomography (PET) can provide.
  • Imaging method could catch osteoarthritis early: Preliminary research suggests that a new imaging technology could help doctors detect osteoarthritis in its early stages and guide the development of new therapies.

For more information on the press conference, including teleconferencing details for those unable to attend in person, please contact: Rebecca Taylor at 312-558-1770 or rtaylor@pcipr.com.

Press Releases

Embargoed until Wednesday, August 2, at 10:00 a.m. (US Eastern Time). Please check back after that time.

Embargoed until Thursday, August 3, at 12:15 p.m. (US Eastern Time). Please check back after that time.

For detailed author information, contact: Rebecca Taylor at 312-558-1770 or rtaylor@pcipr.com.

Hot Topics

The 58th AAPM Annual Meeting features cutting edge research across the field of medical physics science. Four HOT TOPICS from the Scientific Program are summarized below. All hot topics are embargoed until the day and time of their presentation (noted in red).

Embargoed for Release until 5 p.m. ET August 2, 2016
Researchers Create 3D Coronary Arteries to Assess if CT Images Accurately Guide Treatment

Coronary disease remains the leading killer in the United States; to date there is no widespread noninvasive method used to determine patients who will best benefit from treatment. Innovative research led by The SUNY Buffalo team used 3D printing to precisely simulate human heart (coronary) arteries could help change that. The 3D printing method opens up a new way to study fractional flow reserve (FFR), which measures a drop in pressure from coronary blockages, which indicate if a patient will benefit from aggressive treatment. Using rubber-like material, the researchers 3D printed arteries from two patients who had significant blockages and connected those models to a pump. Advanced electronics measured FFR and then showed high agreement, or validation of the FFR measurements with simulations based on the patients’ CT images.

Speakers:
Ciprian Ionita, Ph.D, Research Assistant Professor, Biomedical Engineering, SUNY Buffalo
Frank Rybicki, M.D., Ph.D., Professor and Chair, Radiology, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, ON Canada
Erin Angel, Toshiba America Medical Systems, Inc, Tustin, CA
Dimitrios Mitsouras, PhD/Assistant Professor of Radiology,Brigham and Women's Hospital & Harvard Medical School
Stephen Rudin, PhD, FAAPM, SUNY Distinguished Professor, Radiol, Neurosurg, Biophys, MAE, EE, University at Buffalo
Daniel Bednarek, PhD, FAAPM, Professor, Radiology Dept. University at Buffalo
Said Zaid, Cardiology Fellow, University at Buffalo
Michael Wilson, University at Buffalo

Embargoed for Release until 4:45 p.m. ET August 2, 2016
New System Can Verify Protons are Zapping Tumors, Not Healthy Tissue

Researchers have developed a gamma-ray spectroscopy system, the first to ensure proton therapy is accurate while the patient is being treated. While protons deposit their cancer-killing energy in a very targeted way, ensuring they end up in the correct spot is challenging due to the various types of tissue they must pass through. Without verification of the correct placement, doctors risk undertreating the tumor or placing too much radiation in healthy tissue. Testing the method in pre-clinical experiments, researchers verified the accuracy of the placement of the protons. Researchers plan to study this new method in humans soon.

Speakers:
Joost Verburg, Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Radiation Oncology, Massachusetts General Hospital
Thomas Bortfeld, PhD, FInstP, FAAPM, Professor and Director, Division of Radiation Biophysics, Massachusetts General Hospital

Embargoed for Release until 7:30 a.m. ET August 3, 2016
Model Can Predict Which Tumors are Oxygen Deficient And Won’t Respond to Cancer Treatment

Cancerous tumors that are hypoxic – oxygen-deficient – don’t respond as well to radiation therapy treatment. That’s because oxygen helps to fixate radiation damage to tumor DNA strands. Extending radiation therapy over several weeks, as is common, allows for tumors to reduce hypoxia because many tumor cells competing for oxygen die. However, not all tumors respond in the same way. Researchers have created a mathematical model that predicts a tumor’s response during radiation therapy. The model combines standard positron emission tomography (FDG-PET) imaging with PET that hones in on cells lacking oxygen (FMISO), The model closely predicted changes in hypoxia distributions in seven out of 10 patients. In three out of ten patients, the response did not follow the expected trajectory. The model potentially could identify normal responders vs. outlier patients who need modified treatments.

Speakers:
Mireia Crispin-Ortuzar, PhD, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
Milan Grkovski, PhD, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
Bradley Beattie, MS, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
Nancy Lee, MD, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
Nadeem Riaz, MD, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
John Laurence Humm, PhD, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
Jeho Jeong, PhD, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
Andrew Fontanella, PhD, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
Joseph Deasy, PhD, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

Embargoed for Release until 7:30 a.m. ET August 1, 2016
DNA Dosimeter is a Method to Directly Measure the Effect of Radiation Therapy

A new type of dosimeter – a device used to measure the amount of radiation received during cancer treatment –was developed to more accurately represent the biological effect of radiation therapy, according to early research. Dosimeters currently used in cancer treatment indirectly measure radiation by looking at absorbed dose, which is not a true measurement of radiation-induced cell damage. The new DNA dosimeter method directly measures DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs), the primary type of damage used to kill cancer cells. Researchers label DNA strands with fluorescein, which allows the strands to be visualized, and attach the strands to magnetic beads to manipulate them. The amount of DNA that detaches from these beads after irradiation is a direct measurement for DNA DSBs. This method could enable a more accurate application of radiotherapy and help ensure the best treatment for patients.

Speakers:
Mohammad Obeidat, M.S., Ph.D. Student, University of Texas Health Sciences Center San Antonio
Kristen Cline, M.S., Ph.D. Student, University of Texas Health Sciences Center San Antonio
Sotirios Stathakis, Ph.D., Associate Professor, University of Texas Health Sciences Center San Antonio
Niko Papanikolaou, Ph.D., Professor, University of Texas Health Sciences Center San Antonio
Karl Rasmussen, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, University of Texas Health Sciences Center San Antonio
Alonso Gutierrez, Ph.D., Associate Professor, University of Texas Health Sciences Center San Antonio
Chul Soo Ha, M.D., Professor, University of Texas Health Sciences Center San Antonio
Sang Eun Lee, Ph.D, Professor, University of Texas Health Sciences Center San Antonio
Eun Yong Shim*, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, University of Texas Health Sciences Center San Antonio
Neil Kirby*, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, University of Texas Health Sciences Center San Antonio
*Co-Principal Investigators

Featured Interviews

AAPM: Future Trends in Medical Physics

AAPM President Bruce Curran, MEng, FAAPM, FACMP, FACR, discusses the key topics at the 2016 meeting of the American Association of Physicists in Medicine. Topics included the advancement of radiomics in medical imaging for quantification for evidence-based clinical decision making in cancer, and improving how quality assurance is done in radiation therapy.



AAPM gratefully acknowledges the cooperation of ITN in conducting these interviews and making them available here and on their website.