Despite buzz at the recent ASTRO meeting about new radiation therapy technology, the ViewRay platform, we've seen a sharp falloff in chatter about this innovative technology. Our research team has spoken to several early adopters, but questions from interested buyers have been few and far between. This is somewhat unexpected, since the technology gets us closer than ever to the “holy grail” of radiation therapy. The ViewRay system, which received FDA clearance last spring, uses continuously acquired MRI images to optimize radiation therapy as it is being delivered. However, ViewRay’s system is expensive and will be restricted to the research setting for the foreseeable future. Researchers still need to solve several challenges related to tumor tracking and adaptive dose delivery.Further, MRI offers better resolution than CT where it counts: soft tissue tumors, such as found in the prostate, or tumors found in complex anatomy, like the brain. MRI simulation has been successfully performed independent of CT for these sites. Other exciting applications include breast, liver, and pancreas among other sites where MRI has traditionally proven itself to be superior to CT.
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