Treatment of Rabbit Liver Cancer In Vivo Using Miniaturized Image-Ablate Ultrasound Arrays

T. Douglas Mast, Peter G. Barthe, Inder Raj S. Makin, Michael H. Slayton, Chandra Priya Karunakaran, Mark T. Burgess, Amel Alqadah, Steven M. Rudich

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


In the preclinical studies reported here, VX2 cancer within rabbit liver has been treated by bulk ultrasound ablation employing miniaturized image-ablate arrays. Array probes were constructed with 32 elements in a 2.3 × 20 mm 2 aperture, packaged within a 3.1 mm stainless steel tube with a cooling and coupling balloon for in vivo use. The probes were measured capable of 50% fractional bandwidth for pulse-echo imaging (center frequency 4.4 MHz) with >110 W/cm 2 surface intensity available at sonication frequencies 3.5 and 4.8 MHz. B-scan imaging performance of the arrays was measured to be comparable to larger diagnostic linear arrays, although nearfield image quality was reduced by ringdown artifacts. A series of in vivo ablation procedures was performed using an unfocused 32-element aperture firing at 4.8 MHz with exposure durations 20-70.5 s and in situ spatial average, temporal average intensities 22.4-38.5 W/cm 2. Ablation of a complete tumor cross-section was confirmed by vital staining in seven of 12 exposures, with four exposures ablating an additional margin >1 mm beyond the tumor in all directions. Analysis suggests a threshold ablation effect, with complete ablation of tumor cross-sections for exposures with delivery of >838 J acoustic energy. The results show feasibility for in vivo liver cancer ablation using miniaturized image-ablate arrays suitable for interstitial deployment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1609-1621
Number of pages13
JournalUltrasound in Medicine and Biology
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Arrays
  • Image guidance
  • Liver cancer
  • Therapeutic ultrasound
  • Thermal ablation
  • VX2 rabbit tumor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Biophysics
  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics


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