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Eur Radiol. 2008 May;18(5):993-1004. doi: 10.1007/s00330-007-0848-y. Epub 2008 Jan 19.

Comparison of continuous vs. pulsed focused ultrasound in treated muscle tissue as evaluated by magnetic resonance imaging, histological analysis, and microarray analysis.

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Lucas MRS Research Center, Department of Radiology, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, CA 94305-5488, USA.


The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of different application modes of high intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) to muscle tissue. HIFU was applied to muscle tissue of the flank in C3H/Km mice. Two dose regimes were investigated, a continuous HIFU and a short-pulsed HIFU mode. Three hours after HIFU treatment pre- and post-contrast T1-weighted, T2-weighted images and a diffusion-weighted STEAM sequence were obtained. After MR imaging, the animals were euthanized and the treated, and the non-treated tissue was taken out for histology and functional genomic analysis. T2 images showed increased signal intensity and post-contrast T1 showed a decreased contrast uptake in the central parts throughout the tissue of both HIFU modes. A significantly higher diffusion coefficient was found in the muscle tissue treated with continuous wave focused ultrasound. Gene expression analysis revealed profound changes of 54 genes. For most of the analyzed genes higher expression was found after treatment with the short-pulse mode. The highest up-regulated genes encoded for the MHC class III (FC approximately 84), HSP 70 (FC approximately 75) and FBJ osteosarcoma related oncogene (FC approximately 21). Immunohistology and the immunoblot analysis confirmed the presence of HSP70 protein in both applied HIFU modes. The use of HIFU treatment on muscle tissue results in dramatic changes in gene expression; however, the same genes are up-regulated after the application of continuous or pulsed HIFU, indicating that the tissue reaction is independent of the type of tissue damage.

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