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North America’s First Carbon Ion Therapy Facility Announced for Mayo Clinic Florida

This morning, Mayo Clinic Florida announced a partnership with Hitachi Ltd. that will bring carbon ion therapy to its oncology offerings. The Jacksonville-based facility will be the first in North America to offer this technology to patients in its $233 million integrated oncology center, to be completed in 2023.

While similar to proton beam therapy which will also be available at the facility, carbon ion therapy is used to treat cancers that are resistant to proton beam therapy, such as hard-to-treat bone and soft tissue cancers. The technology delivers carbon ions that are 12 times the weight and size of proton ions making the therapy more destructive to cancerous cells with minimal damage to healthy tissue. Studies have suggested it could trigger an immune response against cancer in general.

Mayo Clinic and Hitachi Ltd. have a long-standing partnership to collaborate on usage of heavy particle therapies. The two entities will work together to achieve approval from the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) to use the U.S.-developed technology, after showing promise in Europe and Asia.

The expectation is that Mayo Clinic’s integrated oncology center will also offer radiotherapy, chemotherapy, proton beam therapy, immunotherapy and other medical treatment for cancer patients.

“Over the years, our city has earned a reputation as a leader in the health and life sciences sector, in no small part because of the Mayo Clinic,” Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry said during the announcement. “We’re one of three U.S. cities who can claim the prestigious Mayo name, and their presence here is growing. Today’s announcement will only further enhance that reputation for both Mayo and Jacksonville.”

For more information, read Mayo Clinic’s press release.