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Title: Modality comparison for small animal radiotherapy: A simulation study

Purpose: Small animal radiation therapy has advanced significantly in recent years. Whereas in the past dose was delivered using a single beam and a lead shield for sparing of healthy tissue, conformal doses can be now delivered using more complex dedicated small animal radiotherapy systems with image guidance. The goal of this paper is to investigate dose distributions for three small animal radiation treatment modalities. Methods: This paper presents a comparison of dose distributions generated by the three approaches—a single-field irradiator with a 200 kV beam and no image guidance, a small animal image-guided conformal system based on a modified microCT scanner with a 120 kV beam developed at Stanford University, and a dedicated conformal system, SARRP, using a 220 kV beam developed at Johns Hopkins University. The authors present a comparison of treatment plans for the three modalities using two cases: a mouse with a subcutaneous tumor and a mouse with a spontaneous lung tumor. A 5 Gy target dose was calculated using the EGSnrc Monte Carlo codes. Results: All treatment modalities generated similar dose distributions for the subcutaneous tumor case, with the highest mean dose to the ipsilateral lung and bones in the single-field plan (0.4 and 0.4 Gy)more » compared to the microCT (0.1 and 0.2 Gy) and SARRP (0.1 and 0.3 Gy) plans. The lung case demonstrated that due to the nine-beam arrangements in the conformal plans, the mean doses to the ipsilateral lung, spinal cord, and bones were significantly lower in the microCT plan (2.0, 0.4, and 1.9 Gy) and the SARRP plan (1.5, 0.5, and 1.8 Gy) than in single-field irradiator plan (4.5, 3.8, and 3.3 Gy). Similarly, the mean doses to the contralateral lung and the heart were lowest in the microCT plan (1.5 and 2.0 Gy), followed by the SARRP plan (1.7 and 2.2 Gy), and they were highest in the single-field plan (2.5 and 2.4 Gy). For both cases, dose uniformity was greatest in the single-field irradiator plan followed by the SARRP plan due to the sensitivity of the lower energy microCT beam to target heterogeneities and image noise. Conclusions: The two treatment planning examples demonstrate that modern small animal radiotherapy techniques employing image guidance, variable collimation, and multiple beam angles deliver superior dose distributions to small animal tumors as compared to conventional treatments using a single-field irradiator. For deep-seated mouse tumors, however, higher-energy conformal radiotherapy could result in higher doses to critical organs compared to lower-energy conformal radiotherapy. Treatment planning optimization for small animal radiotherapy should therefore be developed to take full advantage of the novel conformal systems.« less
Authors:
; ; ;  [1]
  1. Department of Radiation Oncology, Molecular Imaging Program at Stanford, Stanford University, Stanford, California 94305 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22250753
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Medical Physics; Journal Volume: 41; Journal Issue: 1; Other Information: (c) 2014 American Association of Physicists in Medicine; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
62 RADIOLOGY AND NUCLEAR MEDICINE; ANIMAL TISSUES; BEAMS; CRITICAL ORGANS; HEART; IMAGES; LUNGS; MICE; MONTE CARLO METHOD; NEOPLASMS; OPTIMIZATION; RADIATION DOSE DISTRIBUTIONS; RADIATION DOSES; RADIOSENSITIVITY; RADIOTHERAPY; SHIELDS; SKELETON; SPINAL CORD