Advancing proton minibeam radiation therapy: magnetically focussed proton minibeams at a clinical centre

Nom de la revue
Scientific Reports
Tim Schneider, Ludovic De Marzi, Annalisa Patriarca, Yolanda Prezado

AbstractProton minibeam radiation therapy (pMBRT) is a novel therapeutic strategy that has proven to significantly increase dose tolerances and sparing of normal tissue. It uses very narrow proton beams (diameter ≤1 mm), roughly one order of magnitude smaller than state-of-the-art pencil beams. The current implementation of pMBRT with mechanical collimators is suboptimal as it is inflexible, decreases efficiency and produces additional secondary neutrons. As a potential solution, we explore in this article minibeam generation through magnetic focussing and investigate possibilities for the integration of such a technique at existing clinical centres. For this, a model of the pencil beam scanning (PBS) nozzle and beam at the Orsay Proton Therapy Centre was established and Monte Carlo simulations were performed to determine its focussing capabilities. Moreover, various modifications of the nozzle geometry were considered. It was found that the PBS nozzle in its current state is not suitable for magnetic minibeam generation. Instead, a new, optimised nozzle design has been proposed and conditions necessary for minibeam generation were benchmarked. In addition, dose simulations in a water phantom were performed which showed improved dose distributions compared to those obtained with mechanical collimators.