Varian Announces New Addition to FlashForward Consortium

PALO ALTO, Calif., May 18, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — As further evidence of the strong industry response to a potential new paradigm in the treatment of cancer, Varian (NYSE: VAR) today announced that Proton Therapy Pte., Ltd. ( in Singapore has joined the FlashForward Consortium. Now including 20 members, representing nine countries, the Consortium is focused on preclinical research, clinical implementation, and advocacy efforts of FLASH therapy.

Varian is installing a Varian ProBeam® Compact system equipped with a 360-degree gantry and integrated cone beam CT at Proton Therapy Pte., Ltd.’s site in Singapore. The system is located at the Advanced Medicine Oncology Centre at Biopolis, an international biomedical research hub in Singapore, and provides clinicians in the region a viable path to potential next-generation treatments such as FLASH Therapy.

FLASH therapy is currently defined as a non-invasive treatment using an external beam delivered in high doses, at ultra-high speeds (less than 1 second), and in one to three sessions. Traditional external beam treatments are delivered in significantly lower doses per session typically spread out over an average of 25 sessions. Working groups in the FlashForward Consortium are identifying preclinical study designs for understanding this therapy, developing and sharing protocols that will enable a safe and quality clinical start for new users, and assisting with regulatory and advocacy efforts.


Updates 2023 FAST-02 Trial: FLASH Radiotherapy for the Treatment of Symptomatic Bone Metastases in the Thorax

  1. Treatment Technique:
    • FPRT is an advanced form of proton therapy, which utilizes protons, charged particles, for targeted cancer treatment.
    • What sets FPRT apart is the delivery of an ultra-high dose of radiation in a very short time, typically in a fraction of a second (“flash” mode).
  2. Benefits:
    • Reduced Side Effects: One potential advantage of FPRT is its ability to spare surrounding healthy tissues and organs from damage compared to conventional radiation therapy.
    • Shorter Treatment Times: Flash therapy allows for extremely short treatment durations, potentially improving patient comfort and compliance.
  3. Scientific Interest:
    • FPRT has gained attention in the scientific and medical communities due to its potential to enhance the therapeutic ratio, meaning it may increase the effectiveness of cancer treatment while minimizing damage to healthy tissues.


Future Implications:

  1. Reduced Toxicity:
    • One of the primary anticipated benefits of FPRT is the potential to reduce acute and long-term toxicity associated with radiation therapy. This could lead to improved quality of life for cancer survivors.
  2. Expanded Applicability:
    • As research progresses, FPRT may become applicable to a wider range of cancer types. Its ability to spare healthy tissues could be particularly beneficial for treating tumors in critical or sensitive locations.
  3. Advancements in Technology:
    • Continued advancements in technology and research could refine and optimize FPRT techniques, potentially making them more widely accessible in clinical settings.
  4. Clinical Trials and Adoption:
    • Ongoing and future clinical trials are expected to provide more data on the efficacy and safety of FPRT. Positive results could lead to increased adoption of this technology in cancer treatment centers.



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