Sunnybrook Research Institute in Toronto has launched a public-private program to develop and commercialize four new types of image-guided treatment and monitoring systems to provide minimally invasive treatments for patients with cardiac diseases and cancer. The technologies include a hybrid catheter, two MRI-based technologies and a system to monitor therapies.
The initiative is being supported through a contribution of $6.91 million CAD ($6.71 million USD) from the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario in a partnership that includes 19 industry partners and Western University. The goal is to accelerate the commercialization of these technologies, which are based on existing imaging technologies that will be redesigned for minimally invasive and outpatient treatments.
The four technologies are:
- A hybrid catheter for imaging of coronary atherosclerosis: A catheter platform that combines optical and ultrasound imaging technologies to generate a single image that allows surgeons to detect the composition of blood vessels and plaque.
- Focused ultrasound surgery: A non-invasive therapy that delivers MRI-guided ultrasound energy to regions of the body to destroy tumors and other lesions.
- MRI intervention: A system that uses MRI to guide and monitor certain treatments such as non-invasive surgery to unblock arteries.
- Therapy response monitoring: A system that combines different types of ultrasound technology to allow physicians to monitor and adjust treatments more effectively, particularly in cancer patients.
The projects will be housed at Sunnybrook Research Institute's Centre for Research in Image-Guided Therapy in Toronto and Western University's Robarts Research Institute and Canadian Surgical Technologies and Advanced Robotics Centre in London, Ontario. Sunnybrook Research Institute will oversee the program.
Partners include GE Healthcare, Philips Healthcare, Pfizer Canada as well as 16 other enterprises.