Clinical Research Papers:

Intratumoral radiofrequency hyperthermia-enhanced direct chemotherapy of pancreatic cancer

Zhibin Bai, Yaoping Shi, Jianfeng Wang, Longhua Qiu, Eric J. Monroe, Gaojun Teng, Feng Zhang and Xiaoming Yang _

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Oncotarget. 2017; 8:3591-3599. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.12295

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Zhibin Bai1,2*, Yaoping Shi1,3*, Jianfeng Wang1, Longhua Qiu1, Eric J. Monroe1, Gaojun Teng2, Feng Zhang1,** and Xiaoming Yang1,**

1 Image-Guided Biomolecular Intervention Research, Section of Interventional Radiology, Department of Radiology, University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, WA, USA

2 Department of Radiology, Zhongda Hospital, Southeastern University, Nanjing, China

3 Department of Interventional Oncology, Renji Hospital, School of Medicine, Shanghai Jiaotong University, Shanghai, China

* These authors made the equal contributions as the co-first author for this study

** These authors made the equal contributions for this study

Correspondence to:

Xiaoming Yang, email:

Keywords: radiofrequency, hyperthermia, chemotherapy, pancreatic cancer, local

Received: April 06, 2016 Accepted: September 20, 2016 Published: September 27, 2016


Purpose: To investigate the technical feasibility of using ultrasound-guided intratumoral radiofrequency hyperthermia (RFH) to enhance local chemotherapy of rat orthotopic pancreatic cancers.

Materials and Methods: Orthotopic pancreatic cancer masses were established by inoculating luciferase/mCherry labeled-pancreatic cancer cells into the pancreatic tails of Lewis model rats via a laparotomy approach. Twenty-four rats with pancreatic cancer and 24 mice with subcutaneous pancreatic cancer xenografts in four study groups (n = 6/group) received various treatments: i) combination therapy of intratumoral MR imaging-heating-guidewire-mediated RFH (42oC) plus local chemotherapy (gemcitabine); ii) intratumoral chemotherapy alone; iii) RFH alone; and (iv)phosphate-buffered saline (PBS). Transcutaneous ultrasound imaging was used to guide the treatment and subsequently follow changes in tumor sizes. Bioluminescence optical imaging was performed to follow photon signal changes. Sonographic and optical findings were correlated with histology at 14 days.

Results: Optical imaging demonstrated a significantly decreased bioluminescence signal in mice with combination therapy group, compared with the other control groups (0.51±0.18 VS 1.6±0.4 VS 3.18±0.9 VS 3.5±0.96, p < 0.05). Ultrasound imaging showed the smallest tumor volumes of both mice and rat group with the combination therapy, compared with other control groups (0.62±0.16 VS 1.25±0.19 VS 2.28±0.25 VS 2.64±0.26, p < 0.05) and (0.75±0.18 VS 1.31±0.30 VS 1.61±0.28 VS 1.72±0.28, p < 0.05). Both imaging findings were confirmed by histologic correlation.

Conclusion Intratumoral RFH can augment the chemotherapeutic effect in an orthotopic pancreatic cancer model.

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