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Phys Med Biol. 2018 Jan 9;63(2):025001. doi: 10.1088/1361-6560/aaa1c9.

Experimental verification of stopping-power prediction from single- and dual-energy computed tomography in biological tissues.

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German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), Heidelberg, Germany. National Center for Radiation Research in Oncology (NCRO), Heidelberg Institute for Radiation Oncology (HIRO) Heidelberg, Germany.


An experimental setup for consecutive measurement of ion and x-ray absorption in tissue or other materials is introduced. With this setup using a 3D-printed sample container, the reference stopping-power ratio (SPR) of materials can be measured with an uncertainty of below 0.1%. A total of 65 porcine and bovine tissue samples were prepared for measurement, comprising five samples each of 13 tissue types representing about 80% of the total body mass (three different muscle and fatty tissues, liver, kidney, brain, heart, blood, lung and bone). Using a standard stoichiometric calibration for single-energy CT (SECT) as well as a state-of-the-art dual-energy CT (DECT) approach, SPR was predicted for all tissues and then compared to the measured reference. With the SECT approach, the SPRs of all tissues were predicted with a mean error of (-0.84  ±  0.12)% and a mean absolute error of (1.27  ±  0.12)%. In contrast, the DECT-based SPR predictions were overall consistent with the measured reference with a mean error of (-0.02  ±  0.15)% and a mean absolute error of (0.10  ±  0.15)%. Thus, in this study, the potential of DECT to decrease range uncertainty could be confirmed in biological tissue.

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