World’s First Physician-Owned Proton Therapy Center Treats First Patient
Mevion-based proton therapy facility in Jacksonville, Fla., opens as other installations hit milestones at two additional Mevion sites
LITTLETON, Mass., April 30, 2015 – Mevion Medical Systems has changed the field of radiation therapy, making it possible for cancer patients to receive proton therapy outside a large hospital or university-based setting. Today, Ackerman Cancer Center in Jacksonville, Fla., used a MEVION S250 proton therapy system to treat its first four patients, becoming the first private, physician-owned practice in the world to provide this advanced form of radiation therapy. Within the system’s first week of operation, eight patients – with cancers affecting the parotid (salivary gland), prostate, tongue, and base of the skull – will begin proton therapy.
"Before the introduction of the MEVION S250, proton therapy systems were the size of a football field and cost hundreds of millions of dollars to build and operate, thus limiting patient access to this important treatment modality. Mevion has developed the world’s smallest proton therapy system, which is installed into a single room with a footprint similar to a conventional radiation therapy unit, allowing it to be integrated with any size cancer facility. In addition, the Mevion system features greatly decreased capital and operating costs and is more environmentally friendly – using as much as 90 percent less energy than traditional systems.
“The fact that a physician-owned private practice is now able to offer proton therapy to its cancer patients is evidence of our mission coming to life,” said Joe Jachinowski, president and CEO of Mevion Medical Systems. “Our mission is to make proton therapy accessible to patients at cancer centers of all sizes while delivering the same quality of treatment as larger and more expensive systems. The opening of the proton therapy center at the Ackerman Cancer Center is a solid proof of the realization of our mission statement.”
Proton therapy targets cancer cells more precisely than traditional photon radiation treatment and results in less damage to surrounding healthy tissue and organs. Because of these attributes, it is ideal for treating pediatric patients and adult patients with cancers in sensitive locations, such as near the brain, spine, heart and lungs.
“We are a full-service cancer center, offering a complement of treatment options – allowing us to choose the modality that is most appropriate for each patient,” said Scot Ackerman, MD, radiation oncologist and medical director of Ackerman Cancer Center. “Proton therapy is an important radiation oncology treatment and one that our patients deserve to be able to access as we help them fight their cancers.”
Ackerman Cancer Center’s system is the second clinically operational MEVION S250. The other, located at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Mo., demonstrated remarkable one-year clinical results. It took less than 11 months to complete treatment of its first 100 patients – the fastest per room ramp-up of any proton therapy system. Additionally, the system demonstrated efficient treatment time identical to X-ray therapy, the ability to treat a diverse and complex array of cancers and impressive operational uptime reaching 97 percent.
Oklahoma System Accepted and Progressing toward Launch
Mevion is also pleased to announce that its system at the Stephenson Cancer Center (SCC) at the University of Oklahoma has passed its acceptance testing and has entered the hospital beam-commissiong phase. Acceptance testing validates that the MEVION S250 at SCC meets or exceeds all precise technical and clinical performance requirements. Operational control of the system has been officially transitioned to the on-site physics and radiation oncology proton team at SCC. The first patients are expected to be treated within a few months.
Ground Broken on Mevion Facility in Washington, D.C.
Additionally, construction is now underway at another Mevion installation site, MedStar Georgetown University Hospital in Washington, D.C.
Installations are also progressing at the Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital in New Brunswick, N.J., University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center in Cleveland and University of Florida Health Cancer Center at Orlando Health, making Mevion Medical Systems the leading provider of single-room proton therapy systems.
About Mevion Medical Systems
Mevion Medical Systems, Inc. is a leading provider of proton therapy systems for use in radiation treatment for cancer patients. Mevion’s flagship product, the MEVION S250 proton therapy platform, is the only modular, single room proton therapy system currently on the market. The MEVION S250 integrates with standard radiation therapy workflow and provides a proton therapy treatment environment at a fraction of the cost, footprint and operational complexity of conventional systems.
Mevion is privately held and based in Littleton, Massachusetts, with international offices in the United Kingdom and Japan. For more information, please visit www.mevion.com.
About Ackerman Cancer Center
Ackerman Cancer Center aims to be patients’ first resource when faced with a cancer diagnosis. Ackerman Cancer Center provides the most advanced radiation oncology treatment available, in a compassionate and respectful environment. A highly trained staff of radiation oncologists and medical professionals provide convenient access of care at three locations across Northeast Florida.