Tomography supported radiation therapy
Radiation therapy is one of the three treatment approaches for cancer diseases. Conventionally, ultra hard X-rays are used for this purpose. Increasingly, in Europe, the US and Asia, facilities for ion beam radiation therapy become available. Better known might be the special case of proton therapy.
This new modality opens new horizons in cancer treatment. This becomes possible by the way charged particles deposit their energy in matter. They show a finite range and a pronounced dose maximum at the end of their track. Therefore, ion beams are an excellent instrument for a precise and considerate treatment especially of deep seated tumours. However, the ion range, which is a crucial measure, is subject to variations caused by different effects including anatomical changes within the patient.
The methods for in in-vivo imaging allow for a visualisation of the actually applied radiation field. These informations serve the team of physicians and physicists in charge, to detect possible variations and to ensure an optimal therapy. The techniques which are under investigation in our group, make use of secondary photon radiation which is inevitably created during beam application.
The design of detector systems for a measurement of these radiation components and the development of software to gain clinical relevant information fromthe measured signals is the objective of our group.
- Positron-Emission-Tomography for ion beam therapy (PT-PET)
- Prompt Gamma Imaging
- Evaluation of a passively collimating camera system
- Hardware development for imaging
- Universal data processing system for prototype development
Besides photon radiation also neutrons are created during ion beam irradiation. The neutrons lead to additional dose to the patient and to a detriment of imaging quality. By means of different detector systems, the neutron radiation fields in the treatment room of the proton therapy facility are investigated.
Our group is part of a strong network, that jointly with national and international partners searches for new solutions to make the treatment of cancer diseases moreeffective, more considerate and more safe.