Alpha DaRT is showing tumor shrinkage in 100% of cases.
Alpha Tau Medical an Israeli company, has developed “alpha DaRT”, an alpha radiation treatment is in clinical trials phase and is showing tumor shrinkage in 100% of cases.
How it works
Alpha DaRT (Diffusing Alpha-emitters Radiation Treatment) treats the cancer cells without the collateral damage to the surrounding area and the body as a whole. It provides a highly localized and effective treatment of solid tumors using alpha radiation.
It has the capacity to destroy cancer cells, inducing irreparable double-strand breaks in cellular DNA.
THE ALPHA DaRT technology, enables the spread of alpha particles across entire tumors by utilizing the radioactive decay of an isotope called radium-224. The treatment is delivered by inserting into the tumor Alpha DaRT seeds which contain radium-224 atoms embedded into their surface. In the process of decay, radium-224 releases its alpha-emitting daughter atoms.
These atoms diffuse to a range of several millimeters, delivering a high dose of alpha radiation along the way. The advantage of the alpha radiation characterizing Alpha DaRT is its extremely high “cancer-killing potential” combined with its short range of side-effects.
These unique characteristics limit collateral damage to the surrounding healthy tissue while effectively destroying the tumor. Other radiation therapies that utilize beta, X-ray, and gamma radiation have longer path lengths that cause more collateral damage to tissue, and need to be dosed at higher levels to achieve the same local “cancer-killing-effect.”
The Initial Results
In a recent study, Alpha DaRT was shown to be effective in humans for aggressive local, radiation-resistant and recurrent tumors of the skin and head & neck. It also demonstrated a very high level of safety for patients, causing no systemic toxicity, and only short-term mild, local toxicity. The treatment led to tumor shrinkage in 100% of cases, and produced a complete response – total tumor destruction – in over 78% of cases! This sounds almost too good to be true.
Study results also showed that the Alpha DaRT possesses many attributes that can contribute to a positive overall patient treatment experience.
• A single minimally-invasive outpatient procedure for insertion of the Alpha DaRT device, without need for any special shielding or an operating room,
• A total treatment duration of only two weeks, where the patient can be at home and live their life normally, and
• Measurable tumor shrinkage in a matter of days
In addition to its value as a single-tumor treatment, Alpha DaRT has shown great potential in pre-clinical studies for the treatment of metastatic cancer, when combined with immunotherapy. Metastases are the primary mechanism of cancer death, so any treatment that can reduce the extent of metastatic growth will prolong patient survival and, it is hoped, reduce some of the suffering and dread that patients feel after a metastatic diagnosis.
Testing Alph DaRT around the world
Many leading cancer centers around the world are now investigating Alpha DaRT for various tumor types, including breast and pancreas. The trials are taking place in locations including Israel, Canada, Japan, Russia, Italy and in the United States at prestigious institutions such as Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York and Montreal University Hospital Center (CHUM).
The Alpha DaRT technology has been developed by an Israeli Medtech Alpha Tau, founded by CEO Uzi Sofer in 2016, promising a treatment for millions of patients worldwide.
The technology had been developed under the leadership of two professors from Tel Aviv University: physics Prof. Itzhak Kelson, and immunology Prof. Yona Keisari.
Alpha Tau is growing rapidly, having expanded from fewer than 10 employees in 2016 to more than 40 in 2020.
To support the growing demand for Alpha DaRT, the company is building global production facilities in Massachusetts, Israel and Japan. Key investors in Alpha Tau’s growth include Shavit Capital, OurCrowd, Medison Ventures, Alan Patricof and Sir Ronald Cohen.
Could Alpha DaRT be a major breakthrough?
Inspired by – Jerusalem Post – Hillel Fuld