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Focused ultrasound

Dr. Meaghan O'ReillyUnder the leadership of Dr. Kullervo Hynynen, vice-president, research and innovation, Sunnybrook and SRI, researchers at the institute are pioneering the development of focused ultrasound, from discovery research, to technology development to clinical trials. Included here are Phase 1 and 2 trials, both world firsts, on the use of focused ultrasound to open the blood-brain barrier in people with Alzheimer’s disease, and a Phase 1 trial on the technology’s use in people with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

Dr. Meaghan O’Reilly, a scientist in Physical Sciences, is studying the use of focused ultrasound to deliver therapies to the spinal cord to treat tumours and other conditions. She received a Fall 2018 Project Grant worth $673,200 over five years from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research to do this. In 2018, she led a study that was the first to show drugs delivered to the spinal cord via focused ultrasound to treat tumours have a therapeutic effect.

Sunnybrook is a Centre of Excellence in focused ultrasound, the first in Canada.