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Thermoacoustic Range Verification with Perfect Co-Registered Overlay of Bragg Peak Onto Ultrasound Image

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S Patch

S Patch1*, M Kireeff Covo2 , A Jackson2 , Y Qadadha1 , K Campbell2 , R Albright2 , P Bloemhard2 , A Donoghue2 , C Siero2 , T Gimpel2 , S Small2 , B Ninemire2 , M Johnson2 , L Phair2 , (1) ,,,(2) Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, Berkeley, CA


TU-FG-BRB-9 (Tuesday, August 2, 2016) 1:45 PM - 3:45 PM Room: Ballroom B

Purpose: The potential of particle therapy has not yet been fully realized due to inaccuracies in range verification. The purpose of this work was to correlate the Bragg peak location with target structure, by overlaying thermoacoustic localization of the Bragg peak onto an ultrasound image.

Methods: Pulsed delivery of 50 MeV protons was accomplished by a fast chopper installed between the ion source and the inflector of the 88” cyclotron at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. 2 Gy were delivered in 2 μs by a beam with peak current of 2 μA. Thermoacoustic emissions were detected by a cardiac array and Verasonics V1 ultrasound system, which also generated a grayscale ultrasound image. 1024 thermoacoustic pulses were averaged before filtering and one-way beamforming focused signal onto the Bragg peak location with perfect co-registration to the ultrasound images.

Data was collected in a room temperature water bath and gelatin phantom with a cavity designed to mimic the intestine, in which gas pockets can displace the Bragg peak. Experiments were performed with the cavity both empty and filled with olive oil.

Results: In the waterbath overlays of the Bragg peak agreed with Monte Carlo simulations to within 800±170 μm. Agreement within 1.3 ± 0.2 mm was achieved in the gelatin phantom, although relative stopping powers were estimated only to first order from CT scans. Protoacoustic signals were detected after travel from the Bragg peak through 29 mm and 65 mm of phantom material when the cavity was empty and full of olive oil, respectively.

Conclusion: Protoacoustic range verification is feasible with a commercial clinical ultrasound array, but at doses exceeding the clinical realm. Further optimization of both transducer array and injection line chopper is required to enable range verification within a 2 Gy dose limit, which would enable online adaptive treatment.

Funding Support, Disclosures, and Conflict of Interest: This work was supported in part by a UWM Intramural Instrumentation Grant and by the Director, Office of Science, Office of Nuclear Physics, of the U.S. Department of Energy under Contract No. DE-AC02-05CH11231. YMQ was supported by a UWM-OUR summer fellowship.

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