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Adv Drug Deliv Rev. 2008 Jun 30;60(10):1193-208. doi: 10.1016/j.addr.2008.03.007. Epub 2008 Apr 3.

Ultrasound mediated delivery of drugs and genes to solid tumors.

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Diagnostic Radiology Department, Clinical Center, National Institutes of Health, 10 Center Drive, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA.


It has long been shown that therapeutic ultrasound can be used effectively to ablate solid tumors, and a variety of cancers are presently being treated in the clinic using these types of ultrasound exposures. There is, however, an ever-increasing body of preclinical literature that demonstrates how ultrasound energy can also be used non-destructively for increasing the efficacy of drugs and genes for improving cancer treatment. In this review, a summary of the most important ultrasound mechanisms will be given with a detailed description of how each one can be employed for a variety of applications. This includes the manner by which acoustic energy deposition can be used to create changes in tissue permeability for enhancing the delivery of conventional agents, as well as for deploying and activating drugs and genes via specially tailored vehicles and formulations.

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