MR-guided Thermal Ablation Device for Pancreatic Tumors

Tech ID: 25923 / UC Case 2013-181-0

Invention Novelty

An endoluminal ultrasound therapy device capable of operation under real-time MRI visualization for precision directed pancreatic tumor ablation.

Value Proposition

The NCI states that pancreatic cancer is the 12th most common cancer in the US; however it is the fourth leading cause of cancer-related death, with a 5-year survival rate of just 4%. Current treatment is often a mix of chemotherapy and sometimes radiation therapy, with only modest survival and palliative benefits. Thermal ablation technologies, including external MR-guided HIFU, are limited in treating pancreatic cancer. Our invention employs endoluminal ultrasound under MRI guidance that creates a targeted tumor debulking therapeutic approach that can potentially increase survival advantages and reduce tumor related pain.

The advantages of this technology includes:

  • Endoluminal placement allows for decreased off-target destruction of healthy tissues
  • Real time visualization and monitoring of tissue temperature and tumor ablation
  • Minimally invasive procedure
  • Versatile design can deliver hyperthermia or ultrasound mechanical energy to augment radiation therapy or drug delivery to pancreatic cancer

Technology Description

Researchers at UCSF (in conjunction with collaborators at Stanford) have developed a MRI compatible endoluminal ultrasound therapeutic device that can be effectively used to target pancreatic tumors for thermal ablation. Use of MR guidance can prevent off targeted destruction of healthy tissue due to both placement accuracy, visualization of soft-tissue; and real-time MR monitoring of temperature and thermal dose of the unique features of this invention allows for the coupling to MRI for 3D non-invasive thermometry which provides for direct volumetric feedback to treatment progress and verification.

Looking for Partners

We are looking for partners to help further develop this device and into clinical trials and on to the market.

Stage of Development

The device has been created, and investigations including large animal studies in vivo have shown feasibility.

Related Materials

Data Availability


Patent Status

Country Type Number Dated Case
United States Of America Issued Patent 10,035,009 07/31/2018 2013-181


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  • Diederich, Christian J.

Other Information


Tumor Ablation, Cancer, Therapy, Pancreatic Cancer, MRI

Categorized As