DFine has successfully treated the first US patient with metastatic spinal tumours using its spinal tumour ablation with radiofrequency (STAR) system.

The STAR system consists of a bipolar navigational instrument that provides controlled access to the vertebral body with controlled Radiofrequency (RF) energy delivery to create a controlled RF ablation zone.

The ablation system, which uses FDA-approved targeted radiofrequency ablation (t-RFA), provides a minimally invasive procedure to ablate the patient’s vertebral body lesion in the palliative treatment of metastatic spinal tumours, while minimising delays in systemic therapy of the primary cancer.

University of Louisville Hospital / James Graham Brown Cancer Center vascular and interventional radiology director Douglas Coldwell said shortly after the treatment the patient’s mobility improved, and just hours after the outpatient procedure, the pain was reduced considerably.

"The targeted delivery of RF energy has the potential to provide the fastest relief from painful metastatic spine tumours. We are pleased to be the first US centre to offer this revolutionary therapy," Coldwell added.

DFine chief executive officer Kevin Mosher said the aim of the company is to work closely with interventional and oncology professional communities to obtain clinical evidence and continually advance its knowledge in the role of t-RFA, with the STAR system in the palliative treatment of patients with painful vertebral body metastasis.

"We anticipate our RF platform will pave the way for additional applications, positioning the company for significant growth into the largely unexplored field of interventional oncology, as it relates to vertebral body spine lesions and other bony metastases," Mosher added.

The company said the STAR system will be initially available to a limited number of centres throughout the US, with full commercial availability anticipated in autumn 2012. Based in San Jose, US, DFine is focused on providing minimally invasive therapies for relieving pain and improving life quality for patients suffering from vertebral pathologies.