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Normal Tissue Toxicities of Pulsed Low Dose Rate Radiotherapy and Conventional Radiotherapy: An in Vivo Total Body Irradiation Study

D Cvetkovic

D Cvetkovic1*, P Zhang2 , B Wang3 , L Chen4 , C Ma5 , Fox Chase Cancer Center, Philadelphia, PA


SU-E-T-501 Sunday 3:00PM - 6:00PM Room: Exhibit Hall

Purpose: Pulsed low dose rate radiotherapy (PLDR) is a re-irradiation technique for therapy of recurrent cancers. We have previously shown a significant difference in the weight and survival time between the mice treated with conventional radiotherapy (CRT) and PLDR using total body irradiation (TBI). The purpose of this study was to investigate the in vivo effects of PLDR on normal mouse tissues.
Materials and Methods: Twenty two male BALB/c nude mice, 4 months of age, were randomly assigned into a PLDR group (n=10), a CRT group (n=10), and a non-irradiated control group (n=2). The Siemens Artiste accelerator with 6 MV photon beams was used. The mice received a total of 18Gy in 3 fractions with a 20day interval. The CRT group received the 6Gy dose continuously at a dose rate of 300 MU/min. The PLDR group was irradiated with 0.2Gyx20 pulses with a 3min interval between the pulses. The mice were weighed thrice weekly and sacrificed 2 weeks after the last treatment. Brain, heart, lung, liver, spleen, gastrointestinal, urinary and reproductive organs, and sternal bone marrow were removed, formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded and stained with H&E. Morphological changes were observed under a microscope.
Results: Histopathological examination revealed atrophy in several irradiated organs. The degree of atrophy was mild to moderate in the PLDR group, but severe in the CRT group. The most pronounced morphological abnormalities were in the immune and hematopoietic systems, namely spleen and bone marrow. Brain hemorrhage was seen in the CRT group, but not in the PLDR group.
Conclusions: Our results showed that PLDR induced less toxicity in the normal mouse tissues than conventional radiotherapy for the same dose and regimen. Considering that PLDR produces equivalent tumor control as conventional radiotherapy, it would be a good modality for treatment of recurrent cancers.

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