Robust diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging for non-invasive monitoring of proton beam treatment

Radiotherapy, either alone or in combination with chemotherapy, is a widely-used method for treating a large number of cancers. Although this type of therapy is generally successful if the cancer is caught early, there is a wide variation in how different patients respond. The reasons for this are not clear, and the investigation of biomarkers to predict either pre-treatment or during treatment how the patient will respond is a critical component to improving patient outcome and minimizing side-effects. MRI is a non-invasive imaging technique that can be used to measure the cellularity of tumours via determining how water diffuses within the tumour. If the tumour responds well to treatment then the cellularity decreases and the rate of water diffusion increases. However, these MRI measurements are very challenging to perform robustly, quantitatively and in a reproducible manner, being very susceptible, for example, to any small patient motion. Here we aim to develop new hardware and software to improve these types of measurements, and to test these developments on two of the most challenging tumours, i.e. head/neck and ocular cancer, which will be one of the focus areas of the Holland Proton Therapy Center, recently established in Delft.

  • Projectnummer / Project number: 17104
  • Deelnemende kennisinstellingen / Participating institutes: Leiden University Medical Center
  • Projectleider / Project leader: Prof. dr. A. G. Webb - Gorter Centre, Dept Radiology, Leiden University Medical Center
  • Type project / Type project: Lopend
  • Startdatum / Start date: 01-01-2019
  • Programma / Programme: High Tech Systemen & Materialen (HTSM)
  • Vakgebied / Discipline: Geneeskunde


Dhr. dr. P. (Piet) Lommerse (Programmamedewerker) Dhr. dr. P. (Piet) Lommerse (Programmamedewerker) +31 (0)30 6001311