UK-headquartered seed localisation company Endomag has received an extended indication in Europe for long-term use of its Magseed soft tissue magnetic marker to identify suspicious lymph nodes before chemotherapy and surgery.

Localisation seeds like Magseed, which is made from surgical-grade steel, are placed in tissue to mark out tumour sites. This helps surgeons accurately locate cancers in the operating room and remove them in one piece, with Magseed being detected in the theatre using the Sentimag probe.

The new indication makes the device the first and only localisation seed in Europe that physicians can place days, weeks or months ahead of surgery.

Receiving chemotherapy before surgery can make it difficult for surgeons to tell whether the cancer has spread beyond the breast or not. Magseed will be used in conjunction with Endomag’s lymphatic mapping agent Magtrace to allow surgeons to perform a more targeted dissection of the lymph nodes and determine if the cancer has metastasised in this way.

The Magseed marker has already been used to help mark and remove breast tumours from tens of thousands of women.

University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center associate professor Dr Abigail Caudle said: “The ability to mark lymph nodes and ensure we remove the cancerous node to examine them closely is a huge advantage for patients, because we spare them extensive and unnecessary axillary surgery.”

Results from two independent studies conducted by Caudle demonstrated that Magseed made it easy to accurately mark positive lymph nodes. Her research also found that the device could be retrieved 100% of the time.

Magseed received 510(k) clearance from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2018 for the same indication.

Endomag CEO Eric Mayes said: “Ever since we launched the Magseed marker we have been asked by European physicians if they can use it to mark a variety of different cancer sites in the body, which also require a longer implantation than the 30 days we had in Europe.

“We received this expanded indication from the FDA last year and I’m delighted that Endomag is the first to offer this same level of targeted treatment to European cancer patients.”