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Particle or Carbon Ion Therapy

A newly formed consortium of six Michigan health systems has created a joint venture to bring the world's most advanced cancer treatment - the first such facility in the Western Hemisphere - to the state’s residents.

The treatment, called particle or carbon ion therapy, is an innovative form of radiation therapy that has been successfully used abroad to kill tumors previously thought incurable. This is possible because it can be focused with a previously impossible degree of pinpoint accuracy in irradiating cancer cells - greatly improving quality of life without the debilitating side effects of conventional radiation and with less damage to surrounding healthy tissue. It surpasses the precision of any other type of treatment available, including proton therapy.

The world's only three particle centers - two in Japan and one in Germany - have shown signficant improvement in care for numerous types of cancer.

The technology is such a tremendous leap in cancer therapy that it will make Michigan a destination for cancer patients from across the nation and around the world. The consortium's leaders believe research dollars will naturally follow, as having the only center in the United States will generate tremendous interest in the study of new therapies. This will provide a critical boost for economic development and the state's research corridor.

A consortium approach is the right way to pursue this expensive but exciting new therapy.

The health systems involved in this consortium have been the trusted source of medical care for Michigan residents for many years. The patients we serve are our friends, our neighbors and our colleagues. Together, we will investigate the best new therapies for our own community and state.

We urge you to contact Gov. Jennifer Granholm and your state legislators and urge them to support this consortium approach to particle therapy.

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