Williams Cancer Institute

Partial tumor destruction with PEF for anti cancer immune stimulation

So in this case, we are using. pulse electrical field (PEF) with combination Intratumoral immunotherapy where we’re treating a patient with pancreatic cancer. One of the things is that you’re not trying to destroy all the tumor, destroy only part of the tumor. Of course, it’s very difficult to know how much should you destroy. Now, we know that in studies with cryoablation, when you’re looking at immune stimulation, somewhere between 75% to 85% of the tumor was ideal to ablate. However, that’s for a certain size, that’s pretty much between two to 4 CM.So it varies in different cases. Of course, also with PEF, it’s a different technology. So I don’t think the volume of ablation has to be great as you would with cryoablation. Of course, we know that PEF seems to be more immune stimulating. This is the main purpose, not to treat one tumor but to generate a systemic immune response to treat cancer everywhere in the body. With PEF you treat a few spots, getting some tumor destruction, getting those pieces of dead tumor that the immune system will see. We’re injecting immunotherapy into that area, so boosting the immune response. So still a lot to learn with it.But obviously we’re using a lot of our experience from all the other things that we know with Ablation and applying it to the pulse electrical field as well.

Reference: Tasu, J. P., Tougeron, D., & Rols, M. P. (2022). Irreversible electroporation and electrochemotherapy in oncology: State of the art. Diagnostic and interventional imaging, 103(11), 499–509. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.diii.2022.09.009

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