Principal Investigators: Dr. Scott Eggener and Dr. Aytekin Oto
Disease: Prostate cancer
Research Description: Prostate cancer is both the second most common cancer and the second leading cause of cancer deaths in men. Treatment at earlier stages can increase survival rates. Drs. Eggener and Oto repurposed a laser device, originally approved to treat brain and breast cancers, to treat early-stage prostate cancers. In a pilot clinical trial with nine patients, the device was used to heat and kill the cancer cells, resulting in a successful and minimally-invasive treatment. Patients were able to resume their normal activities the next day. By using MRI technology to monitor the laser, the research team was able to eliminate or minimize damage to the surrounding normal tissue. This repurposed laser produced fewer side effects than other treatment options, and treatment was completed the same day, resulting in improved patient outcomes.
CWR funding role: Primary funder
→ Data are supporting off-label clinical use
→ Data leveraged into larger philanthropic or government funding for this treatment
→ University of Chicago and several other institutions are now offering this treatment to patients with prostate cancer