Imaging of prompt emissions during proton cancer therapy for geometric and dosimetric verification

Lead Research Organisation: University of Liverpool
Department Name: Physics

Abstract

Proton Beam Therapy is a type of radiotherapy, which uses a precision high-energy beam of particles to destroy cancer cells. The treatment is particularly suitable for complex childhood cancers, increasing success rates and reducing side- effects, such as deafness, loss of IQ and secondary cancers. It can also used to treat brain cancers and head and neck cancers. It is crucial that there is clear knowledge of the quantity of radiation required and also delivered to a patient during treatment. This proposal "Imaging of prompt gamma emissions during proton cancer therapy for geometric and dosimetric verification", aims to develop an optimised detector and methodology to allow real time verification of radiation delivery.
This task is an essential part of the radiotherapy process, however this is significantly more challenging for protons than for high energy photons (which are utilised in existing facilities). The proposal brings together experts in radiation sensors from the University of Liverpool, imaging experts from University College London (UCL) and University College London Hospital (UCLH) and Radiation therapy professionals from the Clatterbridge Cancer Centre. UCLH will be the home of one of the two new proton therapy centres to be built in England, Clatterbridge houses the only existing proton therapy facility in the
UK.

Planned Impact

Robust in vivo dosimetry provides absolute confirmation that radiotherapy is delivered as intended and is recommended by both professional bodies and the UK National Patient Safety Agency (9). Radiation overdose to normal tissues resulting either from calculation errors or geographical missing of the tumour has serious consequences for patients, as does tumour underdose, leading to treatment failure and avoidable disease progression. Reported radiotherapy incidents that have led to patient deaths or severe treatment-related side-effects (10) could, in the vast majority of cases, have been prevented had in vivo dosimetry been performed. Diode and portal-imaging based methods are commonly used for in vivo dosimetry in photon radiotherapy, however neither method is adequate, if possible at all, for proton therapy. Deriving delivered dose via PG imaging has the potential to fill this important role in the safe delivery of proton radiotherapy.

Publications

10 25 50
 
Description Use of novel Compton Imager to facilitate mapping of dose deposition during proton therapy. Initial feasibility study indicates this will work.
Exploitation Route A series of measurements are planned to take place in a clinical setting this year.
Sectors Healthcare

 
Description The initial feasibility study indicates that the novel Compton Imaging approach is feasible for imaging dose deposited during proton therapy
First Year Of Impact 2016
Sector Healthcare
Impact Types Societal

 
Description Proton Therapy 
Organisation The Clatterbridge Cancer Centre NHS Foundation Trust
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Access to the Proton Therapy facility for measurements with phantoms.
Collaborator Contribution Extensive clinical knowledge and experience.
Impact The research work is in progress
Start Year 2015
 
Description Imaging 2016 conference presentation 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Imaging 2016 international conference in Stockholm, Sweden. Showcasing the impact of STFC technology in Medical Imaging.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description Invited talk: Gamma-ray imaging spectroscopy, CARM conference, NPL, London 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Invited talk at CARM conference (radiation metrology)
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description Physics INNOVATE 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact Physics INNOVATE was run as part of the international festival of business. Held in Liverpool at the Convention Centre (2016) and the Town Hall (2015). The event showcased the key UoL and STFC technologies to a broad range of industry. A number of new projects have commenced following these events.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015,2016