alexa The radiobiological effect of intra-fraction dose-rate modulation in intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT).


Journal of Cancer Science & Therapy

Author(s): Bewes JM, Suchowerska N, Jackson M, Zhang M, McKenzie DR

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Abstract Intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) achieves optimal dose conformity to the tumor through the use of spatially and temporally modulated radiation fields. In particular, average dose rate and instantaneous dose rate (pulse amplitude) are highly variable within a single IMRT fraction. In this study we isolate these variables and determine their impact on cell survival. Survival was assessed using a clonogenic assay. Two cell lines of differing radiosensitivity were examined: melanoma (MM576) and non-small cell lung cancer (NCI-H460). The survival fraction was observed to be independent of instantaneous dose rate. A statistically significant trend to increased survival was observed as the average dose rate was decreased, for a constant total dose. The results are relevant to IMRT practice, where average treatment times can be significantly extended to allow for movement of the multi-leaf collimator (MLC). Our in vitro study adds to the pool of theoretical evidence for the consequences of protracted treatments. We find that extended delivery times can substantially increase the cell survival. This also suggests that regional variation in the dose-rate history across a tumor, which is inherent to IMRT, will affect radiation dose efficacy. This article was published in Phys Med Biol and referenced in Journal of Cancer Science & Therapy

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