Science & Tech
Improving ability to track mobile tumours in real time could lead to safer and possibly automated radiation therapy, radiologists say.
A cross-faculty team of University of Alberta researchers has developed a faster way of tracking the movement of tumours in the body during radiation therapy, which could significantly improve outcomes for cancer patients.
“When a patient is getting radiation treatment, for example on the lungs, the tumour might be moving because of the patient’s breathing,” said Michelle Noga, a U of A radiologist who also works at MIC Medical Imaging and is the study’s co-author.
“We normally have to radiate a bigger area than the actual tumour to account for that movement. So the idea is that if you could track their breathing and adjust the beam to match that, you wouldn't have to radiate such a big area and potentially damage healthy tissue.”
The team’s work builds on the Linac-MR project, a radiation beam (linear accelerator or “linac”) ...