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June 15 th, 2021 - Press release

Launch of European research into radiotherapy for cardiac arrhythmias

Launch of European research into radiotherapy for cardiac arrhythmias

On June 15th and 16th, the STOPSTORM consortium coordinated by the UMC Utrecht with the IMIM and Hospital del Mar's participation, met virtually to discuss early project progress. The project, which officially started on May 1st, will begin researching the use of radiotherapy in treating cardiac arrhythmias. Patients who suffer from ventricular tachycardia (fibrillation of the ventricles) are often treated with medication and/or implantation of an ICD, a defibrillator that corrects a rapid heart rate with an electric shock. In cases of persistent arrhythmias that do not respond adequately to regular therapy, patients may undergo invasive catheter ablation.

The aim of the consortium, consisting of 31 partners across 8 European countries, is to investigate the option of radiotherapy-ablation for the 30%-50% of patients whose symptoms persist after catheter ablation. The treatment, which is also used in lung oncology, consists of a high dose of radiation administered in a single session.

Dr. Julio Martí, assistant physician of Cardiology at Hospital del Mar and researcher of the Biomedical Research Group on Heart Diseases of the Hospital del Mar Medical Research Institute (IMIM) and Dr. Manuel Algara, head of the Radiation Oncology Service of the same hospital and researcher of the IMIM Research Group on Radiation Oncology, explain that "this is a project of European magnitude to study the benefit and safety of radiotherapy in the treatment of ventricular tachycardia inaccessible to conventional catheter access".

The main objective of the STOPSTORM consortium is to create a European validation cohort to determine efficacy and safety in a large population of patients with ventricular tachycardia. The information also helps to gain insight into which dose should be administered and how. Expert center Harteraad connects, empowers and represents patients in the project.

STOPSTORM is European research funded with an EU Horizon 2020 grant of €7.1 million.

For more information visit http://www.stopstorm.eu/ and follow us on Twitter (@stopstormEU) and Linkedin

This project has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 945119

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