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13 November 2012

CPAC Announces Receipt of First Letter of Intent after Technical Breakthrough

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Livermore, Calif. – November 13, 2012 – Compact Particle Acceleration Corporation (CPAC) announced today that following a series of recent technical breakthroughs on a prototype DWA test accelerator, it has received a letter of intent for delivery of its first proton therapy system to Southwest Oncology Centers, a renowned radiation oncology facility in the United States. Southwest Oncology Centers has facilities in Scottsdale, Glendale, and Yuma, Arizona, and works with additional radiation oncology centers in Chihuahua and Aguascalientes, Mexico, and San Salvador, El Salvador.

“Four years ago we were first introduced to CPAC and its’ unique compact, proton beam accelerator. We were immediately attracted to its specific attributes with a more precise Bragg-peak proton beam and little neutron contamination. A compact, cost effective proton solution will allow community based cancer centers to offer proton treatments to a larger patient population”, according to Dr. Gordon L. Grado, Medical Director of Southwest Oncology Centers in Arizona, and the Wuertele Professor of Radiation Oncology at the University of Minnesota. “The high costs of Proton Centers, typically between $100 Million and $200 Million dollars are a reason for the limited number of treatment facilities in the United States. This limits the number of cancer patients that can take advantage of this highly desirable cutting edge technology. Greater access to this technology will allow patients to remain closer to their family and friends as they battle cancer. The CPAC’s DWA system will allow us to provide even greater treatment options for both the early and advanced cancer patients and tumor challenges that we see at all of our facilities.”

Radiation therapy has been used in the treatment of cancer for many years, but most of the treatments utilize X-rays, which are successful in destroying many tumors but can also damage healthy tissue around the tumor. In contrast, protons deposit their energy near the end of their path. As a result, the beam energy can be precisely delivered to the tumor volume, limiting damage to surrounding tissues or critical organs.

Proton therapy is a particularly compelling treatment for pediatric patients and some hard-to-treat cancers, such as those requiring high doses of radiation or tumors that are close to sensitive structures. Because of the cost and size of proton therapy systems, this type of therapy has been limited to approximately 30 centers around the world. With its pioneering work on developing a compact proton accelerator, CPAC aims to make this treatment accessible to every cancer center.

CPAC’s new proton therapy system employs a very compact accelerator based on the Dielectric Wall Accelerator (DWA) technology developed by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL). The prototype accelerator in operation at the CPAC facility has recently achieved an accelerating gradient approaching 20 million electron volts per meter (MeV/m).

“This gradient is comparable to those achieved by the most advanced medical accelerator devices today,” said Anthony Zografos, Ph.D., CPAC’s Chief Operating Officer.  “In addition, we have developed new technology for the DWA that will remove the stress from critical system components and allow even higher accelerating gradients. This proprietary technology now being incorporated into the prototype system will allow us to achieve 25 MeV/m in the coming months and reach 35 MeV/m before the end of 2013. We have already demonstrated some highly desirable clinical features, unique to our device, such as shot-to-shot control of proton energy, dose rate and spot size which greatly facilitate the delivery of the most advanced form of proton therapy, Intensity Modulated Proton Therapy (IMPT),” Dr. Zografos said.

CPAC’s first clinical system will be a single room, fixed scanning beam, 50-150 MeV system that is upgradeable to 215 MeV. It will be intended for installation in existing facilities, and it will fit in two side-by-side conventional electron linear accelerator rooms with relatively small retrofits. CPAC plans to release the detailed system specifications in the coming months.

About Compact Particle Acceleration Corporation (CPAC)

Compact Particle Acceleration Corporation (CPAC) is an independent privately held corporation in the proton therapy system business. The company is developing a very compact proton therapy system powered by the dielectric-wall accelerator (DWA). For more information, visit