Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Sensors, a smart dose of medicine for cancer treatment

03.11.2005


New sensor systems being developed will help treat cancer and improve the accuracy and reliability of existing radiation treatments. They should help improve patient care and outcomes. The results will go straight to commercialisation when finalised next year.



The INVORAD project developed systems for real-time radiation monitoring for patient dosimetry in Intensity Modulated Radiotherapy (IMRT). IMRT is a radiation therapy for cancers that improves clinical outcomes by more accurately targeting tumours and minimising the amount of radiation absorbed by healthy tissue.

The result is that patients only receive a high radiation dose where they need it and healthy tissue is preserved.


The problem with IMRT so far, however, is that it becomes increasingly difficult to verify that patients receive the prescribed dose of radiation. "IMRT prescriptions are based on very complex computer simulations, so it is important to validate these simulations by verifying exactly how much radiation is reaching the patient and where it is landing," says Aleksandar Jaksic, INVORAD project coordinator at Ireland’s Tyndall National Institute.

INVORAD developed two sensors, a silicon diode and a p-channel metal-oxide semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET), to do just that. "Several features, such as miniature size, response to types of radiation involved in radiotherapy, compatibility with microprocessors that enables real-time read-out and low cost, make these semiconductor sensors eminently suitable for the intended application," says Jaksic.

The diode sensor system is arranged in a series of modules containing 1069 individual diodes that can pick up incoming radiation.

"These diodes need to be very small and while there are commercial packaged diodes out there we needed diodes in bare die form with some novel properties so we developed the diodes ourselves, here at the Tyndall Institute," says Jaksic.

The arrays are extremely accurate and can track radiation at micro-Gray resolution over millimetres of spatial resolution.

These are then linked to a read-out unit and a PC with dedicated software. The read-out unit is based on ASIC (Application Specific Integrated Circuit) and microprocessor technologies, and its function is to communicate with, and retrieve data from, the sensor arrays. The PC and software provide system control, connectivity to other parts of an overall radiotherapy system, such as record and verify packages, and patient-specific data storage.

INVORAD also developed a cylindrical ’body phantom’. The ’phantom’ is given the prescribed dose and the diode sensors pick up the dose actually delivered. "The two modular 2D diode arrays are placed in orthogonal positions inside the phantom, so we have data in 3D over time," says Jaksic.

If the ’phantom’ treatment matches the prescription of the simulator, the patient is given treatment. If not, the treatment plan needs to be corrected. "We created modifications on the diodes and diode arrays, improving their specifications for this project. In fact, every element of the project we worked on received some sort of improvement on current systems," says Jaksic.

Some types of MOSFETs can also detect radiation. In the INVORAD MOSFET-based system these are used in-vivo, mounted in medical catheters in the form of linear arrays, entering the patient through a cavity.

"We’re currently testing that device in patients with our clinical partner, the Clatterbridge Centre for Oncology, one of the largest oncology centres in the UK. Of the two devices, the diode system is the most commercially viable. However, the MOSFET system is working and we’ll have the results of patients trials in the next few months," says Jaksic.

"We need to further optimise some parameters of the diode sensor system, but from the work we’ve done so far we know how to solve these remaining issues." Jaksic believes it is worth the wait. "Unlike most projects, this device will go straight to market and our commercial partner, ScandiDos in Uppsala, Sweden, is a start-up created for the manufacture and marketing of the device."

Jaksic is particularly pleased because the new sensor systems will improve treatment verification for a large number of cancer patients.

"The prevailing opinion is that IMRT improves treatment outcomes," says Jaksic. "Crucially, IMRT reduces the side-effects patients often suffer from radiotherapy and improves accuracy of dose delivery, and these are the most important impacts in the treatment of cancer."

Tara Morris | alfa
Further information:
http://istresults.cordis.lu/

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Penn studies find promise for innovations in liquid biopsies
30.03.2017 | University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine

nachricht 'On-off switch' brings researchers a step closer to potential HIV vaccine
30.03.2017 | University of Nebraska-Lincoln

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: A Challenging European Research Project to Develop New Tiny Microscopes

The Institute of Semiconductor Technology and the Institute of Physical and Theoretical Chemistry, both members of the Laboratory for Emerging Nanometrology (LENA), at Technische Universität Braunschweig are partners in a new European research project entitled ChipScope, which aims to develop a completely new and extremely small optical microscope capable of observing the interior of living cells in real time. A consortium of 7 partners from 5 countries will tackle this issue with very ambitious objectives during a four-year research program.

To demonstrate the usefulness of this new scientific tool, at the end of the project the developed chip-sized microscope will be used to observe in real-time...

Im Focus: Giant Magnetic Fields in the Universe

Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.

The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.

Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...

Im Focus: Tracing down linear ubiquitination

Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.

Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...

Im Focus: Perovskite edges can be tuned for optoelectronic performance

Layered 2D material improves efficiency for solar cells and LEDs

In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...

Im Focus: Polymer-coated silicon nanosheets as alternative to graphene: A perfect team for nanoelectronics

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

International Land Use Symposium ILUS 2017: Call for Abstracts and Registration open

20.03.2017 | Event News

CONNECT 2017: International congress on connective tissue

14.03.2017 | Event News

ICTM Conference: Turbine Construction between Big Data and Additive Manufacturing

07.03.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

'On-off switch' brings researchers a step closer to potential HIV vaccine

30.03.2017 | Health and Medicine

Penn studies find promise for innovations in liquid biopsies

30.03.2017 | Health and Medicine

An LED-based device for imaging radiation induced skin damage

30.03.2017 | Medical Engineering

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>