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Edinburgh installs new veterinary linear accelerator
The new accelerator is equipped to deliver the most advanced forms of radiation therapy.

Advanced therapy offers new cancer treatment options

The University of Edinburgh’s Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies has announced the introduction of a new linear accelerator, placing it at the forefront of veterinary cancer treatment in Europe.


The new accelerator is designed to provide more targeted treatment, meaning that higher doses of radiation can be given less frequently. It also means that patients can have a shorter stay in hospital and receive fewer anaesthetics.


Offering the same cutting edge treatment options you will find in any human hospital, the accelerator is equipped to deliver the most advanced forms of radiation therapy. This includes static gantry intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT), dynamic gantry IMRT/RarpidArc, electron therapy and conventional 3D radiation therapy. 


It will be operated by a team including American and European boarded veterinary radiation oncologist Dr Magdalena Parys, European board certified oncologist Juan Carlos Serra, and therapeutic radiographer Emma McCormick. 


The University said in a press release: “IMRT is an advanced treatment technique, which allows the delivery of a precise dose of treatment to almost any tumour shape. In particular cases, this technique reduces the dose to normal structures, which decreases side effects in normal tissues which are close to the tumour. 


“Secondly, can IMRT allow an increased total dose of radiation to be delivered to the tumour. A common example is the use of IMRT to spare the eyes, brain, skin and oral cavity when treating nasal tumours. R(D)SVS is the only place in the UK to offer IMRT.”


The accelerator is also equipped with cone-beam CT imaging facilities, which enables the radiation oncologist to position the animal with greater accuracy so that treatment is safer and more effective. It is the only veterinary linear accelerator UK with this capability. 


The University added: "The new radiation unit will also soon be able to treat patients with stereotactic radiotherapy. This is a type of protocol that usually consists of one, two or three high-dose radiotherapy fractions, delivered with pin-point accuracy and in a short period of time. 


“By giving much more targeted treatment you can give high doses less frequently as you are mainly hitting the tumour cells, not the adjacent normal tissues. It also means a shorter stay in the hospital and less anaesthetics. This type of radiotherapy treatment modality has been successfully implemented in other places in the world for many tumour types, such as nasal and brain tumours.”

Image (C) University of Edinburgh.

 

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Kennel Club appoints new chief executive

News Story 1
 The Kennel Club has announced the appointment of Mark Beazley, who was previously Cats Protection's director of operations, as chief executive. Mark replaces Rosemary Smart, who stepped down from the role in April after 18 years.

Mark has held several senior strategic and executive roles, including executive director at Dogs Trust Ireland and chair of the Companion Animal Working Group at Eurogroup for Animals. He was also heavily involved in the establishment of the Eu Cat and Dog Alliance.

Mark will take up his new role in October. 

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International Cat Care appoints new head of veterinary division

International Cat Care (ICC) has announced the appointment of Nathalie Dowgray as head of the charity's veterinary division.

Nathalie, who is an RCVS advanced practitioner in feline medicine, will lead the International Society of Feline Medicine (ISFM) and a play key role in advancing knowledge and research in feline medicine.

Claire Bessant, iCatCare's chief executive said: "We're absolutely delighted to be welcoming Nathalie to the charity. She brings a depth and breadth of feline expertise and understanding which fits perfectly with the charity's work and development, and her enthusiasm for cats is infectious."