Focused ultrasound: tumour ablation and its potential to enhance immunological therapy to cancer

Giov Anni MAuri, luc A. Nicosia, Zhen Xu, s. Alv Atore Di Pietro, loren Zo MonFArDini, Gui Do bonoMo, Gi Anluc A.MAri A. vArAno, Fr Ancesco PrADA, PAolo Dell A. viGnA, Franco Orsi

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Various kinds of image-guided techniques have been successfully applied in the last years for the treatment of tumours, as alternative to surgical resection. High intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) is a novel, totally non-invasive, image-guided technique that allows for achieving tissue destruction with the application of focused ultrasound at high intensity. This technique has been successfully applied for the treatment of a large variety of diseases, including oncological and non-oncological diseases. One of the most fascinating aspects of image-guided ablations, and particularly of HIFU, is the reported possibility of determining a sort of stimulation of the immune system, with an unexpected “systemic” response to treatments designed to be “local”. In the present article the mechanisms of action of HIFU are described, and the main clinical applications of this technique are reported, with a particular focus on the immune-stimulation process that might originate from tumour ablations.

Original languageEnglish
Article number20170641
JournalBritish Journal of Radiology
Issue number1083
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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