Highlights from ASTRO Conference 2019
ASTRO 2019 in Chicago wrapped up two weeks ago, and here are a few of the highlights from this year’s conference. The past few years have seen several new technologies introduced into the radiation oncology world, and here are several worth noting.
- RefleXion appears to be closer to commercializing its new device, which will use PET tracers to identify and treat hard-to-treat tumors. It will be the only linear accelerator that can treat stage 3 and stage 4 cancers, and is expected to make a big splash when it becomes commercially available.
- A third entrant has joined the Linac/MRI combination device space. First, there was ViewRay’s MRIdian system, offering the first-ever linear accelerator powered by MRI imaging guidance. Then came Elekta’s Unity, with a higher 1.5T magnet strength. And now a new company from Canada, Magnet Tx is entering this space, although it has yet to secure CE or FDA approval. Time will tell whether these higher-cost technologies become the new norm in radiation therapy.
- Varian introduced its new Ethos linear accelerator, an upgraded Halcyon machine using artificial intelligence and adaptive planning to provide a more robust way to treat tumors.
- Accuray is having success with its upgraded machines (Radixact, Cyberknife) especially in overseas markets.
- Novocure showcased its new Optune system for treating brain tumors using electricity. It’s an exciting new technology with promising results.
- Akesis announced FDA approval for its cobalt based Galaxy device, a head-to-head competitor of the Elekta Gamma Knife system. It will soon offer the first-ever cobalt/linac combination system.
At ROS, we showcased a fresh new look with a new logo and a new booth. We also welcomed several new faces: Brett Jackson, formerly with Varian and Daniel Sanchez, formerly with Elekta.
ROS helps radiation oncology and imaging centers in developing markets, rural markets, and markets with low populations and/or low reimbursement environments. By selling your used medical equipment to ROS, you are providing one more opportunity to extend the quality and quantity of healthcare in these more challenging environments.
Don’t forget to visit us at upcoming shows and events.