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Prostate Research Group (Bonekamp)

Research Focus

The prostate imaging group is focused on the development of state of the art clinical prostate imaging and novel diagnostic and therapeutic approaches in close collaboration with the Department of Urology at the University Hospital. Several projects are ongoing.


MR-TULSA (MRI-Guided Transurethral Ultrasound Ablation of the Prostate using Real-Time Thermal Mapping)

Contact: Bonekamp/Hatiboglu

Magnetic resonance imaging-guided transurethral ultrasound ablation (MRI-TULSA)(1, 2) is a novel minimally invasive technology for ablating prostate tissue, potentially offering good disease control of localized cancer and low morbidity. The department of radiology at the DKFZ was one of the three major sites in the phase 1 study which was performed between March 2013 and March 2014. The objective of the phase 1 study was to determine the clinical safety and feasibility of MRI-TULSA for whole-gland prostate ablation in a primary treatment setting of localized prostate cancer (PCa). MRI-TULSA was feasible, safe, and technically precise for whole-gland prostate ablation in patients with localized PCa. Phase 1 data were sufficiently compelling to study MRI-TULSA further in a larger prospective trial with reduced safety margins, which began in December 2016 and is currently (March 2017) ongoing.

Ion Prostate Irradiation (IPI)

Contact: Bonekamp/Müller-Wolf

The Ion Prostate Irradiation (IPI) study is a phase-II prospective, randomized trial to evaluate safety and feasibility of primary hypofractionated proton and carbon ion irradiation of PCa patients using an active raster scan technique (3). In the time period between March 2012 and October 2013, a total of 92 patients with biopsy- proven PCa were included. The 18-month follow-up was completed in June 2015. The precise monitoring of treatment changes with multiparametric MRI during this novel form of treatment has led to new insights into the pathophysiology of prostate cancer which will be useful for further development of imaging biomarkers (4, 5).  A follow-up study is currently in the planning phase.

Selected Publications

1.        Chin JL, Billia M, Relle J, Roethke MC, Popeneciu IV, Kuru TH, Hatiboglu G, Mueller-Wolf MB, Motsch J, Romagnoli C, Kassam Z, Harle CC, Hafron J, Nandalur KR, Chronik BA, Burtnyk M, Schlemmer HP, Pahernik S. Magnetic Resonance Imaging-Guided Transurethral Ultrasound Ablation of Prostate Tissue in Patients with Localized Prostate Cancer: A Prospective Phase 1 Clinical Trial. European urology. 2016;70(3):447-55.

2.        Mueller-Wolf M, Röthke M, Hadaschik B, Pahernik S, Chin J, Relle J, Burtnyk M, Dubler S, Motsch J, Hohenfellner M, Schlemmer HP, Bonekamp D. Transurethral MR-Thermometry Guided Ultrasound Ablation of the Prostate–The Heidelberg Experience During Phase I of the TULSA-PRO Device Trial. MAGNETOM Flash. 2016;66(3):130-7.

3.        Habl G, Hatiboglu G, Edler L, Uhl M, Krause S, Roethke M, Schlemmer HP, Hadaschik B, Debus J, Herfarth K. Ion Prostate Irradiation (IPI) - a pilot study to establish the safety and feasibility of primary hypofractionated irradiation of the prostate with protons and carbon ions in a raster scan technique. BMC cancer. 2014;14:202.

4.         Wolf MB, Edler C, Tichy D, Rothke MC, Schlemmer HP, Herfarth K, Bonekamp D. Diffusion-weighted MRI treatment monitoring of primary hypofractionated proton and carbon ion prostate cancer irradiation using raster scan technique. Journal of magnetic resonance imaging : JMRI. 2017.

5.         Bonekamp D, Wolf MB, Edler C, Katayama S, Schlemmer HP, Herfarth K, Rothke M. Dynamic contrast enhanced MRI monitoring of primary proton and carbon ion irradiation of prostate cancer using a novel hypofractionated raster scan technique. Radiotherapy and oncology : journal of the European Society for Therapeutic Radiology and Oncology. 2016;120(2):313-9.

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