Purpose: Small animal irradiation is crucial to the investigation of radiobiological mechanisms. The paradigm of clinical radiation therapy is trending toward high-precision, stereotactic treatment. However, translating this scheme to small animal irradiation is challenging owing to the lack of high-quality image guidance. To overcome this obstacle, we developed a multimodality image guided precision radiation platform. Methods and Materials: The platform consists of 4 modules: x-ray computed tomography (CT), bioluminescence tomography (BLT), fluorescence molecular tomography (FMT), and radiation therapy. CT provides animal anatomy and material density for radiation dose calculation, as well as body contour for BLT and FMT reconstruction. BLT and FMT provide tumor localization to guide radiation beams and molecular activity to evaluate treatment outcome. Furthermore, we developed a Monte Carlo–based treatment planning system (TPS) for 3-dimensional dose calculation, calibrated it using radiochromic films sandwiched in a water-equivalent phantom, and validated it using in vivo dosimeters surgically implanted into euthanized mice (n = 4). Finally, we performed image guided irradiation on mice bearing orthotopic breast and prostate tumors and confirmed radiation delivery using γH2AX histology. Results: The Monte Carlo–based TPS was successfully calibrated by benchmarking simulation dose against film measurement. For in vivo dosimetry measured in the euthanized mice, the average difference between the TPS calculated dose and measured dose was 3.86% ± 1.12%. Following the TPS-generated treatment plan, we successfully delivered 20 Gy dose to an animal bearing an orthotopic prostate tumor using 4 BLT-guided radiation beams and 5 Gy dose to an animal bearing an orthotopic breast tumor using a single FMT-guided radiation beam. γH2AX histology presented significantly more DNA damage in irradiated tumors and thus validated the dose delivery accuracy. Conclusions: Combined with Monte Carlo TPS, this multimodality CT/BLT/FMT image guided small animal radiation platform can specifically localize tumors, accurately calculate dose distribution, precisely guide radiation delivery, and molecularly evaluate treatment response. It provides an advanced toolset for radiobiology and translational cancer research.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||10|
|Journal||International Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics|
|State||Published - Nov 15 2020|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
- Cancer Research