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Phys Med Biol. 2006 Aug 21;51(16):N277-86. Epub 2006 Jul 26.

Implementation of biologically conformal radiation therapy (BCRT) in an algorithmic segmentation-based inverse planning approach.

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Department of Medical Physics, Ghent University, Proeftuinstraat 86, 9000 Gent, Belgium.


The development of new biological imaging technologies offers the opportunity to further individualize radiotherapy. Biologically conformal radiation therapy (BCRT) implies the use of the spatial distribution of one or more radiobiological parameters to guide the IMRT dose prescription. Our aim was to implement BCRT in an algorithmic segmentation-based planning approach. A biology-based segmentation tool was developed to generate initial beam segments that reflect the biological signal intensity pattern. The weights and shapes of the initial segments are optimized by means of an objective function that minimizes the root mean square deviation between the actual and intended dose values within the PTV. As proof of principle, [(18)F]FDG-PET-guided BCRT plans for two different levels of dose escalation were created for an oropharyngeal cancer patient. Both plans proved to be dosimetrically feasible without violating the planning constraints for the expanded spinal cord and the contralateral parotid gland as organs at risk. The obtained biological conformity was better for the first (2.5 Gy per fraction) than for the second (3 Gy per fraction) dose escalation level.

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