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Magnetically Focused Proton Irradiation of Small Volume Targets

G McAuley

G McAuley1*, J Slater1 , A Wroe2 , (1) Loma Linda University, Loma Linda, CA, (2) Loma Linda University Medical Center, Loma Linda, CA


WE-D-17A-4 Wednesday 11:00AM - 12:15PM Room: 17A

Purpose: To explore the advantages of magnetic focusing for small volume proton irradiations and the potential clinical benefits for radiosurgery targets. The primary goal is to create narrow elongated proton beams of elliptical cross section with superior dose delivery characteristics compared to current delivery modalities (eg, collimated beams). In addition, more general beam shapes are also under investigation.

Methods: Two prototype magnets consisting of 24 segments of samarium-cobalt (Sm2Co17) permanent magnetic material adhered into hollow cylinders were manufactured for testing. A single focusing magnet was placed on a positioning track on our Gantry 1 treatment table and 15 mm diameter proton beams with energies and modulation relevant to clinical radiosurgery applications (127 to 186 MeV, and 0 to 30 mm modulation) were delivered to a terminal water tank. Beam dose distributions were measured using a PTW diode detector and Gafchromic EBT2 film. Longitudinal and transverse dose profiles were analyzed and compared to data from Monte Carlo simulations analogous to the experimental setup.

Results: The narrow elongated focused beam spots showed high elliptical symmetry indicating high magnet quality. In addition, when compared to unfocused beams, peak-to-entrance depth dose ratios were 11 to 14% larger (depending on presence or extent of modulation), and minor axis penumbras were 11 to 20% smaller (again depending on modulation) for focused beams. These results suggest that the use of rare earth magnet assemblies is practical and could improve dose-sparing of normal tissue and organs at risk while delivering enhanced dose to small proton radiosurgery targets.

Conclusion: Quadrapole rare earth magnetic assemblies are a promising and inexpensive method to counteract particle out scatter that tends to degrade the peak to entrance performance of small field proton beams. Knowledge gained from current experiments will inform the design of a prototype treatment nozzle that incorporates similar focusing magnets.

Funding Support, Disclosures, and Conflict of Interest: This project was sponsored in part by funding from the Department of Defense (DOD# W81XWH-BAA-10-1).

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