IOMP Webinar: Relative biological effectiveness of protons – time for a change?

IOMP Webinar: Relative biological effectiveness of protons – time for a change?

Friday, 13th May 2022 at 12 pm GMT; Duration 1 hour

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NEW: CME/CPD credit point shall be awarded for participation in the webinar in full.

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Organizer: Madan Rehani, IOMP
Moderator: Eva Bezak, IOMP
Speaker: Iuliana Toma-Dasu

Iuliana Toma-Dasu is Professor in Medical Radiation Physics and the Head of the Medical Radiation Physics division at the Department of Physics, Stockholm University, affiliated to the Department of Oncology and Pathology at Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, Sweden, and the Editor in Chief of Physica Medica – European Journal of Medical Physics.

Iuliana Toma-Dasu studied Medical Physics at Umeå University, Sweden, where she also became a certified medical physicist and received a Ph.D. degree. In parallel with her involvement in the educational program for the medical physicists run at Stockholm University, her main research interests focus on biologically optimised adaptive radiation therapy, including particle therapy, modelling the tumour microenvironment and the risks from radiotherapy.


Current practice in proton radiotherapy planning is based on the assumption that the relative biological effectiveness (RBE) of protons has a constant value of 1.1 as recommended by the ICRU report 78. Nevertheless, increasing evidence is pointing nowadays towards to fact that the RBE of protons is not constant but it varies with the endpoint, the dose per fraction, the actual beam quality described by the linear energy transfer (LET) or other metrics and, of course, the tissue type. This presentation will give a brief overview of the clinical evidence for variable proton RBE and will introduce the frame of the mathematical models for variable RBE based on in vitro cell survival data and the application of these models on proton treatment evaluation and optimisation. A critical discussion on the change from a constant 1.1 proton RBE to a variable value will also be presented.

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