NuMat is working to bring the advances of additive manufacturing to radiation therapy and create patient- specific devices that will improve the treatment of cancer. Our TruDose Phantom will enable more effective treatments, fewer side effects, and reduced risk of secondary cancers. Combining patient-specific tissue composition and geometry with a proprietary dosimetry technique, the TruDose Phantom will allow patients and physicians to more accurately know where delivered radiation was deposited in the body.
Radiation therapy of cancer has evolved significantly over the last few decades. Advances in treatments have been striving to minimize the radiation dose delivered to the healthy tissue surrounding the active cancer volume while maximizing the efficacy of the dose delivered to the actual cancer. This has been accomplished through advances in high resolution imaging (e.g. Computed Tomography (CT), Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), and Ultrasound); advanced radiation treatment techniques that increase the number of treatment fields (i.e., directions in which the radiation is externally applied), e.g. intensity-modulated radiation therapy, volumetric modulated arc therapy; and/or treatment techniques that time-gate the application of the radiation (e.g. real-time tumor tracking radiotherapy, respiration gated radiation therapy). With the increase in complexity of radiation treatments, more sophisticated quality assurance/quality control (QA/QC) techniques are needed to ensure effective treatment while maintaining patient safety. In many instances, existing QA/QC techniques are not adequate for these advanced treatment techniques and new techniques are required.
The NuMat TruDose Phantom is suitable for use with a wide variety of advanced proton and photon therapies, including IMRT, VMAT, IMPT and for a number of hard to treat cancer modalities, including brain, breast, lung, and prostate cancers. For the first time, treatment centers will have the ability to effectively and confidently link a patient’s planned treatment dose to the delivered dose even for the most sophisticated treatment techniques.
The NuMat TruDose Direct-Reading Phantom is made from proprietary transparent polymers that allow the phantom to accurately model a specific patient’s tissue/bone density and energy-dependent effective Z numbers. A photochromic/radio-chromic compound bound onto the transparent polymer reacts with radiation directed onto the phantom (this can be ionizing radiation or non-ionizing, e.g. visible or ultraviolet light depending on the photo-/radio-chromic polymer compound used). Upon irradiation, the photochromic/radio- chromic polymer mixture changes color proportionally with the radiation dose delivered. This color change provides an almost infinite resolution to the spatial data of the radiation dose delivered. After irradiation, the phantom is scanned to quantify the absorbed dose at each point in the phantom thereby providing a very accurate image of the delivered dose to the phantom. This digitized image can then be overlaid on an image of the patient’s anatomy to create a composite image that maps dose to specific locations in the patient’s treatment area. This technique will provide 100% imaging coverage of the cancer area and surrounding tissues enhancing understanding of delivered dose.
The TruDose Phantom can be treated with the prescribed treatment plan prior to patient treatment delivery to help inform dose calculation; simultaneously with the patient to independently verify delivered dose; or for quality assurance of the equipment. As a result, contemporary proton and photon therapies, e.g., IMRT, VMAT, and IMPT can be delivered more accurately and with reduced potential for error and harmful side-effects to healthy tissues. For difficult to deliver treatments the NuMat TruDose phantom can be vital in the precise delivery of radiation treatments.
NuMat has applied for patent protection for this invention and has exclusive, transferable, and irrevocable license to this technology. NuMat is looking to partner with interested parties to commercialize this important innovation in radiation therapy quality assurance.Contact NuMat